Date: 2/28/17 10:02 am From: Pamela Hunt <phunt...> Subject: [NHBirds] Great Gray Owl in Newport, NH
A Great Gray Owl was photographed in Newport on Saturday, but didn't come to NH Audubon's attention until yesterday, and we finally confirmed the location this morning.
The bird was off of Belknap Road in a small field with a cell tower. The field is just west of the Sugar River and between Pine and Ash Streets. During the original observation the owl was being harassed by crows and flew off towards a heavily wooded area to the west of Pine Street.
That is the only sighting we have of this bird. If it is still in the area, it could be frequently open areas along the Sugar River, particularly to the north. I am not familiar with the area, but see on Google Earth that there is a rail trail that generally follows the river, and which might provide relatively easy access to additional locations.
Owls like this always attract attention, and as always it is important for interested birders and photographers to respect private property, operate in a manner that does not impinge upon the activities of non-birders (e.g., with respect to parking), and of course do not harass the bird if it is relocated. The observer was concerned about disturbance to the bird if he reported it so please be sensitive to this issue.