It’s confirmed. Bond Park has two pairs of Barred Owls. One pair is on the west side of the lake in a large, tall pine at bridge # 7, and the other pair is on the east side of the lake near the creek that flows under the paved path and enters the lake.
One of the East Side owls roosts in the pine where the creek enters the lake. It’s very easy to see when it’s there. Its perch is not very high up. The other East Side owl roosts in a very skinny pine with an old squirrel’s nest (click on photo). That pine is near the trashcan and bench, which are about 50 – 75 feet from the creekside owl. Will these owls be using the old squirrel’s nest this season? Who knows? We’ll have to wait and see. What might these owls on the East Side be eating? Well, I found an owl pellet (this is pellet #6) under the pine where the creekside owl roosts. I just finished sorting through the contents and saw, once again, the bones of at least one very small rodent, bits of snail shells, and parts of a larger sized rodent that included a few dark, bristly hairs. I don’t know what these rodents might be. The large curved teeth shown in the photo below slide through a bony sleeve, and I could easily move those teeth within that sleeve.
It will be a load of fun to watch these East Side owls. They are so much more accessible and will offer great opportunities to educate the passing public about these amazing feathered creatures, their habitats, diet, and, with a little luck, their ability to hatch and raise a couple of cute, fluffy owls.
Here’s one last photo of the East Side owl in the skinny pine just below an old nest: