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16 April 2013

Long-eared Owl constant calling

Below, a short video taken at dusk this evening. With the sun gone down, the final chorus of Blackbirds and Robins is accompanied by the coarse, wheezing calls of a female Long-eared Owl. This sounds a little like a Collared Dove, but is much 'throatier' and lower pitched.

It's nearly dark, and a female Long-eared Owl calls every few seconds. The bird itself is hidden in the foliage, about two thirds the way up the right spruce (Video: Michael O'Clery).

While the female called almost continuously for a full hour, the male only called three times during that period – a mournful "HOOO!". These birds were at a site in Duhallow where they had occupied an old Hooded Crow nest, but  failed to breed last year, perhaps because of the heavy rain (see this post HERE for more).