After the failure of the owl nest on the east side of the lake, I have been hesitant to venture too close to the owl nest on the west side. Fearful that human proximity had caused the nest failure, I wanted to ensure that the owls on the west side of the lake got the privacy they deserved. Afterall, imagine the popperazzis waiting outside your door every morning at 8am. Maybe you’d leave home, too. At least, you’d grow tired of it. Perhaps owls are different. If an observer is silent and moves slowly, maybe owls won’t mind your taking a respectful interest in their family life.
This morning I ventured to get closer to the nest site. Previously, I viewed the nest only from the path 50-60 feet away. But this morning, employing the patience of Job and the plodding pace of a sloth (literally), I eased into the woods and picked my way to her cavity. Her eyes were on me the whole way. Thirty minutes later, I had snaked (more like ‘snailed’) my way to a spot 30-35 feet from the nest. My angle of view was about 35 degrees. I was finally clear of the tangles of vines and briars, though the poison ivy draped from every tree I leaned against. Aiming my lens upward, I snapped a few photos:
Is she sitting on eggs or chicks? When will they emerge from the cavity? Will I be there to capture their debut? Maybe…