i returned home last night, just as the clock tickled midnight. the temperature hovered around zero, which just so happened to describe where my interest in owls was. still, i had to spend a few minutes on the deck to see if anything was happening with my “boy”, the male saw-whet who has come-a-courting.
alas, there was no song and no one in the cavity, which means it’s still early or…he has moved on. making deductions based upon 5 minute observations is not sound (unless you are a naturalist or attend umd) and so, i am cautious about coming to a conclusion about the tree top events in my back yard.
diurnal update: i just checked the cavity tree and there was nothing there but “good god man” (inner voice of owl wisdom), “it’s not even april yet.”
“you are right, inner voice. now please stop!”
my good friend jan horak brought me a deer carcass a couple of weeks ago (a true sign of north shore giving) and while the corvids are currently enjoying it, they have taken umbrage over the arrival of an adult bald eagle. scavengers show no class when it comes to sharing. right now, the eagle is sitting at the top of a spruce, surrounded by 20 cacaphonous crows.
owl surveys last night were conducted without so much as a taste of an owl. the weather was cold and calm, but the landscape was surprisingly quiet. the nighttime temperatures are supposed to remain around zero the next couple of nights, so swaddling myself in stinky fleece is on the menu.
speaking of stink (warning: another heartwarming owlman anecdote coming), in 2001, i went 11 days without taking a shower. i didn’t do it because i was rustically situated, i did so because as a biologist, i was curious about the putrification process. the stink was trapped in fleece whenever i ventured outside, so i don’t think anyone noticed or cared. then again, i never had to wait in line at the holiday or super america. when the shower came, it was glorious. i wrote about it on a long-lost blog and assumed that the immersion and reveling over ones’ personal stink was a “guy thing.” lo and behold, i received a response from a female field biologist who confessed it wasn’t just a “guy thing”, that she too had conducted a similar “experiment lasting several weeks.”