Date: 10/30/19 8:10 am From: April Lauman <amo_cowboy...> Subject: [obol] Re: barred owls
Although this may not pertain specifically to barred owls washing ashore from the ocean, I thought I would add a behavioral observation to the discussion. My husband and I live at a fish hatchery with a nesting pair of barred owls present each breeding season (and year-round residents as well). We were surprised, after moving here, to find that barred owls are one of many bird species that prey on juvenile salmonids in the ponds at the hatchery. We have actually witnessed this behavior on multiple occasions, especially in early evening. I bring this behavior to light because on several occasions my husband has arrived at work to discover a juvenile owl drowning in a pond and unable to get itself out (and then nets it out and places it in a bushy area to recover safely). Our assumption is that in learning to hunt, they have not mastered the skill of pulling up before they wet their feathers, and end up getting themselves stuck in the water. Without someone coming along to net them out, they would for sure drown.
I am not sure if owls would be looking for food out in the ocean, so again, this observation may not pertain to them washing ashore, but it does help explain possibly finding drowned barred owls in a freshwater environment.