Hello everyone; it is I, Chess the purebred border collie, yet again. I’m filling in for the guy I live with whose mind, so he says, is “unusually blank”, which of course has never stopped him from talking before, but, I guess, this time it’s different. You may remember me from such delightful posts as “Something Completely Different” and “Life With A Nut”, among others.
Here I am in a characteristically bucolic pose.
We don’t have much gardening news to report tonight.
You may have noticed, though, that a number of my posts have featured pictures of rabbits. This evening, the garden became very still…..
The guy I live with snuck out to the “way back” to see if there was someone there, and there was.
He’s taken pictures of this same owl several times. There’s something wrong with its right eye.
Later on, he saw this.
This was a much smaller owl. So there were two great horned owls in my back yard. I felt I should go out and see the bigger owl on the pole, and as I walked by, the guy I live with said that the smaller one watched me.
I think I’m too big to be grabbed. I hope so anyway.
So that was that. Big scary owls in my back yard.
Until next time, then.
Wow! That’s close – I saw an owl fly once, and heard them a few times, at the old house. Never saw one land…commands respect!
The big one comes and sits on one of the poles every so often. Trouble is we can’t see it from the back patio, and only discover it when we walk back there, and it flies away. I was lucky enough to spot it this time before scaring it. Those are some pretty impressive talons, to be sure.
The little one (slightly bigger than a 5 lb bag of flour) let me walk right up to it. Watched the dog very carefully, though.
Aren’t you the happy dog, Chess! Perhaps the owls are too, and I’m not schooled in recognizing happy in an owl. But they sure look watchful. At least one has an eye on you. Are you good at strategy? I suppose a flurry of barks constitutes good anti-owl strategy. Maybe you should rehearse your strategy. My dogs rehearse, and as far as I know there’s not an owl in the neighborhood.
The guy I live with says I weigh too much to be grabbed by an owl. Well, he weighs too much too.
I don’t think barking scares them very much.
I just put “Owl Watching” on my To Do list. The only owls one sees around here are the fake ones that are put up on buildings to discourage pigeons from congregating on ledges. Plus, I have my grandmother’s stuffed owl that is 100 years old, a relic from a time when people killed noble wild creatures to use as interior decor. Oh, yeah, I also have a collection of owl jewelry from the 1970s, relics from a time when people killed good taste.
New quest: I have to find out where the owls of Long Island hang out and go there. Thank you for the inspiration. Gorgeous photos.
Thanks. There is a reason why they come into the yard, and maybe we’ll just leave it at that. I was hoping to get a picture of the big one in flight, to show how large these birds really are, but was unsuccessful.
First time the little one has come, that I know of. Fledgling? Mate? I don’t know. The little one is the one that’s been making squawking noises, all day long, almost all summer.
Hello again, Chess, my monochromatic friend! My Grammy says that the local skunk population plummeted when the owls showed up so we love having them around! We, however, are alerted to the presence of the owls by the opposite of stillness in the garden, i.e. crows, bluejays and chickens going into unremitting, high-volume, predator-alert mode. A self-respecting owl can only take so much of this racket before moving on and what a grand sight it is to see one in flight! (I’m sure they return after dark, when the skunkies are out. I chased a skunk once. Not an experience that I ever wish to repeat, let me tell you. But that’s a whole ‘nother story, and frankly not one I enjoy even thinking about.)
Bertie, the owl Grampy brought home from the local Agway, sits serenely on a special ledge on the gable side of the house. His job is to keep the neighborhood woodpeckers from drilling holes in the cedar siding. It’s a thankless and boring assignment but Bertie doesn’t seem to mind–he just continues to look menacing, albeit also unnaturally serene. I make it a point not to bark at any owls, but I do like to observe them. From a respectful distance, that is. Please tell the guy you live with that we all enjoyed the beautiful pictures.
I will, thanks. Tell him, I mean.
I’m not terribly fond of skunks even though they’re colored just like I am. One time I got sprayed right on my own patio. I was just minding my own business and a skunk walked up and pththththt sprayed me.
It turned out that they were sneaking in under the fence and the guy I live with blocked that out.
The funny part was when the guy I live with went to work the next day. He’d taken a shower, of course, and thought everything was okay, but, well, it wasn’t.
That’s not why he decided to take early retirement, is it?
Ha ha. No, it wasn’t. He paid off the house we live in, and then heard the retirement bell. My mommy, though, called me Skunk Boy for quite a while. Of course the first thing I did after getting sprayed was jump into her bed. (That’s what you do.)
Oh, thank you Chess — due to your post alert, I discovered via my husband we have a burrow in our parkway of a burrowing owl type, so it is possible we have burrowing owls. They’re endangered! Now that I know, we’re on the lookout. Burrowing owls, ooh.
Yes, ooh. I had to look them up though I’d heard of them. Generic name Athene, after you know who, huh. No “horns”. I guess those would get in the way in a burrow.