Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Western Burrowing Owl - Owlets on Martin Road

My seventh group of owlets was on Martin Road, between Bannister and Walker Roads. There was a lot of interesting activity and I took over 300 photos of them. Both parents were involved with feeding two owlets. The burrow was on level ground behind a cement containing wall for an irrigation ditch. 
Both parents, side by side, one with a cricket or grasshopper for one of the owlets. 

One of the parents drooped its wing quite a bit. It was similar to what I've seen a killdeer parent do when it is trying to lead a predator away from its chicks. 
This series of photos shows a parent come in with a cricket and deliver it to one of the owlets. 
Parent delivers a cricket or grasshopper to an owlet. It looks like they mostly do this with their eyes closed, perhaps to keep them from being injured by flailing insect legs. 

The owlet now has the cricket, but its beak is hidden by the cement retaining wall. 

Parent moves away to the right. 

One of my favorite photos. The owlet holds the cricket in its mouth. 

Now the cricket is gone!

The next series of photos shows an owlet's eyes follow one of its parents as it flies over. The owlet rushes over to the arriving parent that holds a cricket in its mouth, but the parent transfers the cricket to the other parent that turns and leaves the owlet, presumably to feed the cricket to the other owlet. 
The owlet spots one of its parents in the air. 

The owlet rushes over to its parents that are involved in a beak-to-beak transfer of a cricket. The owlet rushes in for it, but is ignored as the parent wheels around and heads toward the other owlet. 

The rejected owlet turns around to follow the other parent. 
A series of photos of the two young owlets. They seem to be the youngest of the owlets I've seen - lots of baby fuzz on the head. 

Another transfer of a cricket to an owlet - the photos are blurry:

Finally, the two owlets with one of the parents with wings outstretched behind them:

1 comment:

  1. Looks like a lot of sibling rivalry going on there. The green background is cool--really highlights the owls.