Date: 2/28/17 6:22 pm From: Doug Hitchcox <dhitchcox...> Subject: [Maine-birds] Moderator request regarding Great Gray Owl posts
This conversation about the ethics of viewing the Great Gray Owl in Searsmont is going beyond the scope of this listserv. Please keep in mind that we have over 1200 members signed up for this group who are interested in learning about birds that are being seen around the state. Please limit posts about this bird to updates on its status and location.
I do want to congratulate Fyn Kynd again for finding this bird. It was a pleasure to see it with him last week and share the excitement of having such a rare and majestic bird on one of his patches. He shared this inspiring note on his Facebook page recently:
> Ever since I started seriously birding it has been my dream to find a rare bird myself and have it stick around long enough for others to see it.
> That dream became reality when I stumbled upon a Great Gray Owl while cross-country skiing on Wednesday evening. I rounded the bend and looked upon my favorite bird, perched precariously on a small Alder a few yards away.
> The next morning I went down with a friend to try and relocate it, we were unsuccessful for a couple hours until we checked a nearby Christmas tree field only a mile away as the Owl flies.
> When we drove up the bird was perched on a tiny Christmas tree, half the size of the large bird, maybe 15 feet off the road.
> The crazy thing is that it was very foggy that morning with visibility only being around 100ft, if that bird had been perched a few trees back we never would have seen it.
> I stayed with the bird for the next 10 hours, accompanied by over 30 birders and photographers throughout the day. Great company!
> I am in awe of this bird, the size, the penetrating eyes, the smooth head movements, the completely silent, moth like flight on it's huge 4ft long wings (the largest wingspan of all North American Owls).
> Thanks so much to everyone who has come and seen this bird over the past couple days. Thank you for being respectful and giving this amazing Owl the distance it needs to hunt.