Date: 1/21/18 6:00 pm
From: Scott <pygmyowl...>
Subject: Re: [cobirds] snowy owls
Thanks for the input on the snowies.

Had a bunch of finches until the Northern Shrike arrived. Once a shrike
sees the finches, it come in and the finches leave.

I don't expect any significant numbers of rosy-finches until the shrikes
leave in March.

Just the way it goes.

Scott


On 1/21/2018 5:39 PM, Peter Burke wrote:
> Hi Scott,
> I’ve had a few experiences with Snowies during east coast irruptions
> and noticed that they often chose large bodies of water or coastal
> areas as daytime hangouts. My working theory was that they prefer the
> unobstructed view, perhaps
> ​because it makes them feel safe when they snooze during the daytime.
>
> Did you get a big Rosy-Finch flock with this weather?
>
> Peter​
>
>
> /From Peter's iPhone/
>
> On Jan 21, 2018, at 8:04 AM, Scott <pygmyowl...>
> <mailto:<pygmyowl...>> wrote:
>
>> Hi all,
>>
>> I have been thinking about the Snowy Owls that have been seen in
>> Colorado, and am thinking that most, if not all of them have been
>> seen near open water. The one at Stanley Lake, the one that Nick
>> Komar saw near Carter Lake etc.
>>
>> At least the one at Stanley Lake did not appear to be feeding on the
>> waterfowl, but rather small mammals that it was catching in the
>> meadows around the lake. (I did hear that the owl did catch a pigeon,
>> but that was not confirmed).
>>
>> Now the owls that are at Boulder, also at a lake.
>>
>> If the owls were at these bodies of water feeding upon waterfowl,
>> there would be piles of feathers found, but that does not appear to
>> be the case.
>>
>> Therefore,  my guess is that the Snowy Owls are near the water simply
>> to bathe. By bathing they can keep their plumage clean, which will
>> subsequently keep the birds in good feather condition.
>>
>> If there had been a significant amount of snow on the ground, the
>> owls would be able to "wash" themselves by using snow; but due to the
>> lack of snow, the owls need to use water to clean themselves.
>>
>> It will be interesting to see if the owls move away from these bodies
>> of water as the snow falls.
>>
>> Just a thought,
>>
>> Scott Rashid
>> Estes Park
>>
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