I had decided to name the Snowy Owl I found yesterday “Houdini”, but when my wife Molly heard about my birding escapades, she came up with a better name, Hootdini! You may ask if this is a strange name for an owl. Normally I would answer yes, but not for this owl. While watching it hunt yesterday morning, 15 minutes into my time with the owl, it got mobbed by crows. Within 20 seconds the Snowy had had enough, and dove for cover from its high perch.
I was watching the dive from a distance of 100 yards. Said Snowy disappeared behind a mound like a magician, and even though the habitat was fairly open … never reappeared to my eyes. The crows also seemed to lose track of the owl’s location, landing in a distant pine tree. For another 15 minutes I tried to relocate the bird to no avail. I scanned every nearby tree with my binoculars. Perhaps this Snowy Owl has learned how to burrow! (very doubtful).
Regardless, I hope this owl has a happier ending than Silver. Agonizingly, this bird represents the second Snowy Owl I have seen and it was only November 16th. I am really beginning to believe this will be a very good winter for Snowies.
Here is one more owl pic. It is just one of eight of my photographs which will soon be on display as part of an “Owls of the Northland Exhibit” which I have created for Perk Place Coffeehouse. This great java hangout works with Destination Duluth photographers to decorate their walls.