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May 2007

April 2007

Screech Owl sounds (new audio format)


    The above image is a sonogram of Mrs. Ace making her after-dusk whinny calls.   

   To find out what it's all about, and hear what it's all about, read and listen on....

   [Note: Even if you haven't been able to open earlier audio files, you should be able to open these.]

    During the past week, I have been working with owl researchers to record Mrs. Ace's voice as she whinnied.


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Modo mojo

   While my wife and I wait for Mrs. Ace and the robin to hatch their eggs, other birds are coming through big-time.

   A young grackle has already begun the age-old grackle tradition of pillaging our feeder, and a little mourning dove Modo ("modo," as in "dodo," for short) was walking around under a shrub yesterday.

   Us, we'll just wait (and hope) for the big show to begin.

April 30 update:

   Mrs. Ace continues to sit on four eggs -- as we enter Day 29 (the egg was laid on Apr. 1).  4_eggs_429_pm_2

   My guess is that by sunset Tuesday we'll have a new arrival, with an emphasis on guess at this point.   

   Mrs. Ace stuck to her routine last evening, flying just after dusk for 20 minutes or so.

   While she was gone, I could see the four eggs, with no change. None seems chipped or cracked.

   This morning, she scratched around a little. Here's a video Download MVI_0179.avi , just to show she's still hangin' in there.

   A birder friend in Central Jersey with a screech cam and a female sitting on three eggs -- he's the chap who had a fourth egg go missing -- reports that  "everything is status quo.  The female is still incubating 3 eggs.

   "Both owls continue to sit together in the box during the day.  Estimated hatch date is about May 5."

   May 5? Man, I'm not sure I can wait that long. Every time I turn on the monitor, I hold my breath.

   P.S.: My friend in Central Jersey says  Mrs. Ace could have a hatchling "anytime, maybe as we e-mail."

   Not yet.



Robin eggs

   At last count, Mrs. R was sitting on three marvelously blue eggs. I have read that four eggs is standard, and that incubation takes roughly two weeks.

   Let's see ...

    The robins basically built a beautiful, perfectly round and elaborate nest out of thin air in a day.

    The female lays four eggs in roughly four days (it took Mrs. Ace. 11 days).

    And the eggs should be hatching in two weeks, vs. a month for screech owlets.

   Something to be said for birds that are the avian equivalents of "Type A."

April 29 update

   All systems in order.

   Mrs. Ace the screech owl on her eggs, calmer than me... 

   Audio and video in fine working order on screech cam.

   Any day now.

   No, really. Any day!

   No verbs today.  Conserving energy.