Saturday, April 24, 2010

Computer Issues Continue

Our computer continues to reside in the Audubon repair shop.  We'll use a home computer to prepare some of this week's images and post them on Monday.  In the meantime, here is an image and description from an Audubon Center at Francis Beidler Forest visitor.

 I took the picture attached on 4/20 between 9:30 and 10:00 in the morning. This owl appeared out of the woods at about stop 2 on the boardwalk and followed along with my wife and me for about 20 or 30 minutes until we got to stop 4.  I was about 20 feet from the owl when I took this picture, and apart from having my camera at full zoom (16X), it's a totally undoctored picture. Since we heard another barred nearby and the receptionist told us that there were owlets in a nest in that area, I'm guessing that this owl was following us to make sure that we didn't make any threatening moves in the direction of the nest.  Even without a close encounter with the owl, Beidler Forest would have been a jaw-dropping experience for us. The owl just put the experience off the charts.
Indeed, there is a Barred Owl (Strix varia) nest north (left) of #116 along the boardwalk.  The nest is in a hollow section of a tall Bald Cypress tree, but is no longer visible from the boardwalk due to the leaves that have appeared on the trees between the boardwalk and nest tree.  Especially now that the owlets are growing, the adult owls will be increasingly visible as they hunt during the day in the shallow, crayfish-filled pools of water.

Although this nest site information did not make version 1.0 of our iPhone/iPod Touch app, it is the type of bonus coverage you will receive if you download the free app prior to visiting the old-growth swamp! 

Image by Leon Galis

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