Hunter, the Red Morph Screech Owl, returns [again].
Since the beginnning of October, I’ve powered up the two nestcams just to see if there’s been any. action. The side/kitchen box remains empty, but the front box has what appears to be a red-phase female (based on the size) snoozing away. The leaves indicate a squirrel has been there in the past and the color is off because it’s a gray overcast day outside. The photo shows that she’s hunkered down over the remains of a pretty large rat.
She spends a day or two in the front box and then is gone for a week or so. This cycle has repeated 3 times now since early October. Last time she was here, she gorged on three, maybe 4, largish rats that she hauled in over 3 days.
Curious George (below) arrives at about 20 seconds and settles in for the day. He’s verbally accosted by a couple of jays and a squirrel about midway through the video. George is the male of the last breeding season (spring, 2020) – a grey-phase Eastern Screech Owl. His mate then was a red-phase female named Hunter. Their breeding attempt was unsuccessful with two clutches of eggs, neither of which hatched. They are both visiting the box off and on again and probably staking their claim on it in late fall 2020.
You can read about, with photos and videos, that attempt (as well as the 2018/19 attempt by a different pair) at http://crcamp.com/owls