Owl Prowl at LSNC
Next he showed us a barred owl, its beak crooked from injury. Then he brought a barn owl, its big white sweetheart face belying its past as an abused pet. Finally, he brought out the great horned owl and reminded us that the tufts on its head are not ears.
He also showed us a preserved owl wing that, no matter how hard he flapped it, amazingly made no noise. This adaptation allows the owl to stealthily fly close to its prey. He also passed around the feather of a turkey vulture. Since turkey vultures are scavengers rather than hunters, they do not need to be stealthy fliers. One turkey vulture feather made much more noise than a whole owl wing.
At the end of the evening, Krawcke rushed back in to report that the second group to go out into the woods had found the eastern screech owls. She excitedly offered to take the rest of us back out to call the owls again. So off we went for more.
You can prowl for owls this year on March 1 and 2.
[Originally published in March, 2013.]