Date: 6/28/18 11:45 am From: Kleb Woods (Commissioner Pct. 3) <KlebWoods...> Subject: [texbirds] Re: Red Phase E. Screech Owl??
We have a rufous morph Eastern Screech-Owl that has used the same nest box for the last 3+ years at Kleb Woods Nature Center in Harris County. We saw downy chicks two years but couldn’t tell what color they would end up. However, that doesn’t really speak to how common they are, as that is the only rufous morph Eastern Screech-Owl I have seen.
On a side note (and this is definitely going down a rabbit hole, so feel free to ignore if it doesn’t interest you), I have always used the word “morph” when describing these color variations, but I know many use the term “phase” or “form”. I tried looking into it to see if one was more proper or preferred, but it appears to be more controversial than I thought! Does anybody here have thoughts on this? I always find these kinds of discussions enlightening. Also, while looking into this, I learned a new word: orismology. That is definitely going to be part of my vocabulary now!
Kendra Kocab, Naturalist
Kleb Woods Nature Center
From: <texbirds-bounce...> <texbirds-bounce...> On Behalf Of Gary Roberts
Sent: Thursday, June 28, 2018 12:13 PM
Subject: [texbirds] Red Phase E. Screech Owl??
Last night, while watching TV, a large bird flew into the patio glass door. It fell to the patio and I went to see if I could revive it--or keep it for a specimen for someone's lab. When I tried to pick it up, it revived and flew away. It was a Red Phase Eastern Screech Owl!
In all the years of birding, leading tours at Bentsen Rio Grande for ten years and living here in Texas, I had never seen anything but Grey Phase E. Screech Owls.
Is this a rare sighting only for me, or are they common?