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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Anybody know what kind of owl this is?

I went down the hill next to my house to haul some firewood out of the woods. I live in Eastern Pennsylvania. This fellow was sitting on the trunk of the fallen tree I was cutting up. He stayed there and watched me the entire time, maybe about an hour, and was still there when I left. Nervy bird.

Or maybe he figured since I was carrying heavy wood up a steep hill he should just wait to see if I had a heart attack so he could eat me.


Glenn Knight said...

I posted this over on Facebook: Agim, the first thing is that this bird has ear tufts. Those are the little tufts of feathers sticking up that look like little ears. So it is not a Barn Owl. Owls with ear tufts included the Eastern Screech, the Western Screech, the Whiskered Screech, the Great Horned, and the Long-Eared. How big was this bird?

Additional info is this: The screech owls are smallish. Eastern Screech is 8.5" high. All of the Screech Owls have ranges too far west for Pennsylvania. My best guess is the Great Horned Owl. Normally the Great Horned would be darker, but you might have a Great Horned Owl fledgling, just out of the next.

Anything further information to share?

Agim Zabeli said...

Thanks for the info, Glenn. This animal was about a foot tall. And could you tell from the photo that it was very fuzzy and downy on the outside of its feathers? My daughter pointed out it seemed to be molting.

Glenn Knight said...

I think that confirms that you've got a very young Great Horned Owl here. My wife also noticed the "fuzziness," which would indicate it's moving from baby feathers to the real thing.