And So It Begins . . . With a little help from Owls

Eastern Screech Owl

Last night Ingrid and I travelled to Newburyport, Massachusetts to celebrate the New Year (ok, we were asleep before 10:00 pm) and to pre-proposition ourselves for Day 1 of our USA Big Year.  We had learned where a difficult to find Long-eared Owl was roosting in eastern Massachusetts, and we were eager to add that tic to our Big Year List.

Long-eared Owls are designated as a sensitive species, and their locations are keep secret.   Ingrid and I have never seen one.

Well, we saw the bird, sharing our excitement with two dear friends who got bitten by the birding bug after spending last New Year’s Day chasing birds across Southern and MidCoast Maine with us. But, the owl was behind a pine tree, in a hollow made by a thicket of other pines. In other words, it was not a very satisfying view, but it was the best we were gonna get.  And we’ll take it.

Long-eared Owl



Later we photographed an Eastern Screech Owl in its burrow, right smack in the middle of Newburyport on a street of beautiful old sea captains’ houses. We were thrilled to see this adorable bird much more clearly than its long-eared cousin!

Eastern Screech Owl

We were less successful later in the day looking for a King Eider and an Eurasian Wigeon, but it’s a long year and we have embarked a marathon, not a sprint. We will find them.






1 comment

  1. By Liz -

    Adorable photos. Following you for your Big Year looks like it’s going to be fun!

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