In Dusk We Trust - Some Owling in Co.Durham, North East England, Great Britain
Leucistic Little Owl image copyright Hilary Chambers, Durham.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Bng / Leo / Noctules / Kes

A new pair of Little Owls have bred on a site close to home this year, making that 4 out of 5 species having nested recently - hopefully Barn owl will complete the set next year.

Long-eared Owl - 350 metres away

audio of juvenile Long-eared Owl - 10 metres away

This, the youngest of the brood still remains close to the natal site, whilst the rest of the family of 5 head out to hunt.

There wasnt a sight or sound from them at 20:30-21:00 -

At this stage in development, the young are far more alert & will fall silent even without prompting from the adults.

but when i came past when heading home in the gloom at 22:30 it was calling regularly from the pathside.

I was within 5metres of it, before it flew off, only to circle around me silhouetted in the light sky to the north.

It landed & continued begging imediately - then again flew up & circled around me as i was walking off away from it - amazing & quite humbling to be "checked-out" in this way.

 quite different scenario to when i bumped into in the daylight one early evening during the week -  it made off into cover & stayed silent for at least 15mins - despite me moving well out the way.


Earlier bumped in Spuggy Kay, a couple of Noctule Bats overhead in good light at 20:45, dropping vertically from time to time while feeding, a couple more of them mixing in with a flock of Swallows.

Later a Kestrel (un-aged) made 3 failed strikes at one of these large bats - they evaded the falcon with ease, acrobatically turning through sharp angles to continue their feeding. Remarkably, it or another Kes was still active zipping past in the dark at 22:20.

Small nos of Swifts remaining over breeding sites, although many have already moved on.


Welcome news from Coln got me out for an hour - weekend birding is a rare commodity these days.

NB: Some of the images below are mine, some are copyright of John Bridges - wonder if you can guess which are which ................ ?

short clip

the near capacity Lyons crowd
CW RR & Mr Charlton Snr

superbly cammo-ed

Thanks again to JBee for some propa pitchas

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