Date: 6/8/18 11:42 am
From: Fran M <franmmmk...> [ILbirds] <ILbirds-noreply...>
Subject: Re: IBET Barn Owl Repeat At Montrose Friday 6-8-18
Update on the I just walked in my house a few minutes ago. Andrew
saw the bird fly to the Forbidden Zone close to where the Kirtland's was a
few springs ago (missed that bird, darn). Anyway, the owl was being mobbed
there, and I was able to get some views from the lakeside field of those
woods, while Andrew was on the inner prairie. After 5 minutes or so, the
owl was flushed by one aggressive grackle and appeared to fly back towards
the hedge. It was not seen again after that; I searched for 2+ hours.


On Fri, Jun 8, 2018 at 12:49 PM, Al Stokie <alstokie99...> [ILbirds] <
<ILbirds-noreply...> wrote:

> Hello Bird People,
> Went to Montrose to get some late Spring shorebirds for my shorebird
> list. I certainly never expected to re-find the Barn Owl as they are
> almost always one day wonders & not seen again. Fran & I could only
> find Sanderlings (4 in breeding plumage) as well as the usual Killdeer
> (3) & Spotted Sandpiper (6) but no Dunlin or Semi-Plovers. Tried for a
> late Nelson's Sparrow but failed there too. Guess I'll have to wait
> for Fall to try again. The only excitement was when a Red Winged
> Blackbird dive bombed me & pecked my cap 3 times to let me know he was
> watching me.
> The only Warblers were Yellow (4), Common Yellowthroat (3) & I heard 1
> Ovenbird singing (Fran had 3 of them). Best bird to that point was a
> calling ALDER FLYCATCHER which I "sort of" saw. Of interest to some is
> that there are now 21 Barn Swallow nest holes & counting.
> Fran had left & absolutely no one was present when I walked by the
> hedge & suddenly all the blackbirds set up a very loud racket when
> they had not made any noise before. Must have found something but I
> figured it was probably the local Red Trailed Hawk. But Hawk or Owl
> something was there to upset the blackbird gang. It took me 15-20 min
> of looking before I found 1/2 of an Owl but not it's head. (A good
> birder would not have taken so long!) As the leaves moved in the wind
> I could see the head & it was the face of a BARN OWL. The Grackles
> (mainly) were all over the Owl but it was really using the leaves &
> branches for protection so the Grackles could only irritate it.
> Finally found 2 other birders to share the Owl with once we could
> re-find it that is. Then as we were trying to get another birder on it
> all hell broke out with lightening, thunder & rain coming down. I had
> called Fran on the other birders phone but when he got there it was
> raining hard. Waited a while & when the rain slowed we went back to
> look. Also, Andrew A showed up & we all looked. But I was due to be
> elsewhere & I was late so I left the Owl search to Fran & Andrew who
> don't need any help from the likes of me. I don't know if they found
> the Owl or not as it may have retreated from where I saw it in the
> deluge.
> If you go to look just do as Bob H said before & let the blackbirds do
> the "heavy lifting" of finding the Owl & then try & locate it
> yourself.
> Guess you know that the Bird-Of-The-Day is the Barn Owl & the
> Runner-Up is the Alder Flycatcher.
> I have not been as lucky as Bob H as this was my 1st Barn Owl at
> Montrose having just missed one a few years ago, but it's my 3rd Cook
> County record in 35 years.
> Al Stokie
> Not finding what I expected but more than glad to find the unexpected

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