Monday, October 29, 2012

PBC #225: Northern Saw-whet Owl!

You just never know what you're going to find at Pheasant Branch Conservancy! I was birding there yesterday with several other birders when we came across a songbird mobbing consisting of Black-capped Chickadees, White-breasted Nuthatches, a Downy Woodpecker, and a couple of American Robins. Since we were in the area of where the Barred Owls are, I initially guessed one of them must have been the subject of the mobbing. However, when the chickadees went lower into the dense tangle, I thought perhaps there was something on the ground they were upset about, like a cat or raccoon. I knelt down and looked under the bushes but couldn't see anything on the ground. However, when I looked up into the branches, I discovered the object of their agitation – a Northern Saw-whet Owl! This is the first time I've observed this species at the conservancy. The photograph represents the best angle we were able to view the bird. Though it won't win any awards, it's a nice documentation photo to remember our exciting find!

© 2012 Mike McDowell


  1. Fantastic! If the flight is as good out there as it has been in the east, this is definitely the year to find one in your local patch.