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Hooded Mergansers

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Whooooo Loves Ya Baby?

No, not a rerun of a Kojak show...  but our own entertainment here at the gate guard job.

This ranch is large so there's plenty of area to explore, but the down side of this job is that one of us has to be at the gate at all times...  no taking walks together.  Actually this has worked out pretty good as when we each return from our walks we have lots of things to share with the other.  

Today was no exception...  Bill went for a long walk after breakfast.  We've pretty much determined that this  ranch is now used for hunting...  deer, quail, doves...  maybe all of the above.

There are lots of deer stands around, but none look as though they've been used recently.  Bill came across this one today...
 Being the observant person he is, he looked it over...  and on one side, he noticed that the boards were warped and had come away from the side.
 Hmmmm...  looks like feathers...  
He didn't have his binoculars nor his camera, so he didn't pursue this any further.  Instead, he walked back home and told me where the blind is located, knowing that I'd head right back there to investigate.

I sneaked up behind the blind...  baby-stepping through the cactus, hoping I wouldn't scare away whatever was there.....
 Oh My!  I've been spotted!
I don't know if this was the Great-horned owl's nest or just a place to hang out for the day.  Mama owl flew off when she saw me, but the two owlets stayed put and checked me out.
 These two baby owls have a great view of the area...  rodents, snakes or any other critter on the desert floor would be easy pickin's from up here.

 The owls are quite large, but still have some of their "downy" feathers.  
I took a bunch of pictures and headed home...
I added "Great-horned Owl" to our list of birds we've seen while here at this job, bringing the total to 54.

Maybe I'll walk back there again tomorrow and see if they're still around.

That's All For Today!

15 comments:

  1. What a find! Your photos are just too perfect--congratulations!

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  2. What a great surprise to see those owls. They are beautiful!

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  3. You certainly are making the best of being in this location.

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  4. Wow, is the first thing that comes to mind. You have been posting some really spectacular wildlife pictures. I am really impressed!! Keep up the good work.

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  5. Great pictures. In Wallace's hunting days, he was always finding owls in his blind.

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  6. These are incredible. The one with him/her looking at you around the side of the board - amazing.

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  7. Great find. We had a pair of GHO baby's here at our site last year, but no signs of any owls so far this year.

    I know that Barn Owls enjoy a good hunting blind as well!

    Mark

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  8. What an exciting find! How lucky you are to have been able to capture all three of them. Good work!

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  9. What a great picture of the Owl peeking around the corner - great shot!

    By the way, your comments are now showing up as they should on my blog and no longer going to the spam folder! That's good!

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  10. Great owl pictures - how fun to find something like this.

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  11. We had baby Barred Owls when we were hosts at Mosquito Lake Campgrounds. Every year they came back and nested near our site. I loved watching the babies and listening to their little voices until they could really "hoot and holler"

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  12. What what an exciting find and glad you were able to get photos to share with us, Sharon. We have robin nests and I suspect a cowbird or mockingbird one as well. You and Bill are really getting such a great collection of wildlife viewings. Not that this would make me want to gate sit, but it's great to experience it through your experiences.

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  13. What a discovery and amazing photos. We were once walking on the street outside our house in Santa Barbara and noticed a pellet on the sidewalk. We looked up and discovered a barred owl nesting the palm tree right over our heads. Direct views of the owl and then one owlet right in our residential neighborhood.

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