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Ron W

Member Since 14 Mar 2006
Offline Last Active Yesterday, 12:30 PM

Topics I've Started

Something You Probably Didn't Know About Burrowing Owls

05 May 2019 - 01:31 PM

I've known for a long time that Burrowing Owls often surround their burrows with mammal fecal droppings. There's long been conjecture among academics and birders as to the reason for this somewhat curious behavior. One theory held that they do it to disguise the scent of their newly hatched chicks in the burrow from predators. Another theory is that they do it to provide food for dung beetles, one of the owl's favorite foods. This photo shows a Burrowing Owl carrying a dung ball that it has wrested from a hard-working dung beetle. I don't know what the owl did with the ball, but the beetles do deposit their eggs inside the balls, which then provide food for the emerging dung beetle larvae. 

Hail, Hail, The Gang's All Here!

03 May 2019 - 07:56 AM

As best I could count, this is the whole gang. Living in an upscale flowered neighborhood, they finally paused long enough for me to get this shot. It is incredibly difficult to get them all looking in one direction at the same time. These chicks all have bright yellow irises, I noticed that some of the others had a much more subdued yellow iris. In reading about the local Burrowing Owl population, I learned that there is indeed some genetic eye color variation among the birds here, with the darker ones not being looked at as an inferior condition, but rather just as a variation.



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Where's A Good Place To Find Burrowing Owls?

01 May 2019 - 11:39 AM


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Eastern Meadowlark

29 April 2019 - 08:36 PM

Can't ever pass up a shot at this beautiful bird. He was among the Burrowing Owls, calling his heart out. It's that time of year.



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Burrowing Owl Adult

29 April 2019 - 03:32 PM

Taken this morning, We got there at about the time that we should have been finishing, but did manage to get a few shots of the chicks. Going back next week and will get there at sunrise.



Nikkor 200-500VR Lens