Eastern Screech Owlets in Providence
© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved. screech-owlets5

Eastern Screech Owlets in Providence

Eastern Screech Owls are one of my favorite birds, so this photo series is very special to me. It took many weeks of persistence and determination (and bike rides) to complete this series. Many days I saw nothing at all, but I ended up with more than expected.

(Here’s an excellent video from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology with more info about the Eastern Screech Owl.)

In February, I took this photo of a screech owl (below) and it was featured in the Daily Mail UK and Cute Overload!

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

In April, I saw a different owl in the same hole. In this pairing, the female above is a red morph and the male below is a grey morph, but sex does not determine color.

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

By May, leaves blocked view of the hole, but I was able to get some pictures through the branches when the wind participated and the owl was willing to pose:

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

May 25: Confirmation that the owls had successfully bred this season – two adorable nestlings peeked out of the hole…

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

…and I got an unexpected shot of mom snuggling with one of them. I made sure to stay out of view to not upset her – she should feel safely camouflaged while in her hole.

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

Three fluffy nestlings filling up the tree hole:

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

May 27: It must have gotten too crowded inside the hole, so mom stood guard from a nearby branch. I could hear her sing to them occasionally – it was beautiful.

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

The owlets looked bigger and more alert every day…

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

…mom was still watching and singing nearby. Since it’s the daytime, she mostly just sleeps. I suspect at night she actively hunts to feed three hungry little owlets. I’ve read the father helps too, but I haven’t seen him lately.

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

May 29: One owlet out of the tree and perched on a nearby branch.

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

May 30: Just one day later, the first fledgling already looked bigger, less fluffy, and more curious about the world. It instinctively knows to hide amongst the dense leaves, but I managed to find a few angles for unobstructed photos.

© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2013 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

I stopped by a few more times but couldn’t locate any of the owls and the tree hole seemed unoccupied. I do not know what happened to the other two nestlings… Did they leave the hole? Did they succumb to nighttime predators? I don’t know, but I wish the whole owl family health and good luck.

9 Comments

  1. Vivian Maxson
    Posted 06.09.13 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

    Really nice photo documentary on an owl who is small in stature but big in attitude.Thank you Peter for bringing this owl family to our attention.

  2. Kathleen Bartels
    Posted 06.09.13 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

    What a great series, Peter! I appreciate the time it took to monitor the hole, and then the time to put this whole series and timeline together.

  3. Rufus Abdullah
    Posted 06.12.13 at 7:11 am | Permalink

    Peter, loved your series.

  4. Hali Sowle
    Posted 06.23.13 at 9:26 pm | Permalink

    Wonderful series Peter! I’m in love with these little ones and your photography.

  5. Peter Green
    Posted 06.24.13 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    Thank you all for the nice comments, I appreciate it

  6. Posted 11.07.13 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

    yes, these are the best!

  7. Bobby B
    Posted 12.31.13 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

    That was a really cool find and follow.

  8. Posted 01.07.14 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    Beautiful Pictures!! Love Them

  9. Kathie Bartlett
    Posted 01.18.14 at 6:44 am | Permalink

    Thank you so much for posting these amazing photos

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>