Finally Some Food!

February 29, 2016 by Rick Cunningham

Screen Shot 2016-02-28 at 6.42.48 PMWell, it was a long wait for the new owlet to have its first meal since hatching!

The hatch was sometime very early on Sunday morning, but Mom kept the new owlet and its sibling covered and warm through the night and then didn’t have any prey in the nest during the day.

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Finally about two hours after dark on Sunday, Dad brought a rat and stashed it in an adjacent tree.  Mom hopped out of the nest to quickly retrieve it.








Screen Shot 2016-02-29 at 7.36.39 AMThen overnight Dad kept bringing more food and this morning Mom and the owlets have a very full pantry.








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Notice how carefully Mom steps around the owlets – she has her huge talons folded
completely back so her footprint is now much smaller AND much less sharp!



The DVR “Loopback” is Back!

February 26, 2016 by Rick Cunningham

You should notice that the camera menu above the main video window has changed. There are now entries for the view from Cams 1 & 2, DVR’s for Cams 1 & 2 and Time-Lapse Videos for Cams 1 & 2. Please let us know if there are any problems with this new capability!


Cam1 Cam2 Cam1 DVR Cam2 DVR Cam1 TL Cam2 TL


And check out this Cheeky Squirrel from yesterday afternoon. It was the owlet’s third feeding on his hatch day, and this squirrel was very curious about what was going on. You have to ask yourself what that squirrel was thinking as it watched mom feeding the owlet. The squirrel had better hope the next visit to the GHOW nest is not a one way trip!

We have 2016 Owlet #1!

February 25, 2016 by Rick Cunningham

This little ball of fluff showed up this morning, but we don’t really know yet when it actually hatched. Maybe some of the archived video will tell us! You can look back up to four hours at this test page.

HatchDay Preparation

February 24, 2016 by Rick Cunningham

In this short video, we get a good look at Mom taking a food break about 2:30 am on Wednesday February 24, a day we hope will come to be known as HatchDay for owlet number one. We don’t see the pip in this video, but saw it clearly in still shots later in the morning, about 5:30. In this video, Mom clearly sees her mate bring food to a nearby tree and she takes a short break from the nest to retrieve it. Did she eat anything herself while she was away? Did she get a chance for a bathroom break? Is this the day?? Stay tuned!

Happy Hatchday?

February 24, 2016 by Rick Cunningham

Mom went out for a bite at 5:30 giving us a good look at the eggs. This little owlet has been working on breaking through it’s shell for some time now, but it looks like there’s a definite pip now. There’s still a LOT of work to do to break through the shell, and we won’t declare the chick hatched until it’s head is completely out of the shell. Meanwhile, Mom’s laid in a tasty swamp rat and snuggled back on the eggs. At first light there’s a gentle rain beginning and the wind’s kicking up, but the eggs are plenty warm.

And for those of you who read this post all the way through, we have set up a new test of the DVR system. If you go to this page you will see the Cam2 DVR with up to a 4 hour lookback. It seems to be working OK. From there you can jump to the Cam 1 DVR but you might not find that it’s working just yet. For those who find their way to those pages, we would appreciate some feedback on how it’s working for you. Happy Hatchday all!

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Is this a Pip??

February 23, 2016 by Rick Cunningham

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At 5:14 PM on February 23 Mary Lambright was on camera duty and saw Mom leave the nest – she zoomed in on the eggs and thought she saw several places where the owlet had begun to crack the egg. Is one of these cracks completely broken through?

“Pipping” is when the chick starts breaking through its shell using a hard projection on its bill called the “egg tooth”. The resulting hole is the “pip” that the chick enlarges to finish hatching. Young pip the egg and emerge without assistance from the parents.(1)


(1) http://www.birds.cornell.edu/page.aspx?pid=2710#nest-egg-pipping

Educational Activities – and Guess the Hatch Date!

February 22, 2016 by Rick Cunningham


Screen Shot 2016-02-22 at 12.06.50 PMMom’s waiting and so are we! When will our first owlet emerge from the egg? Head over to our education page and take a look at the data from last year, and then compare it with this year’s dates. If you can guess the date and time, Guess the Owl Hatch Date 2016 you can win a spiffy stadium blanket from the Cornell Lab of ornithology. Also on the education page you can find our new map of the classrooms who are following our owls and have registered with us, and a lot of other information on K-12 activities you can use with your kids. Check it out!

Dad Brings a Treat

February 21, 2016 by Rick Cunningham

Early on the morning of Thursday Feb 18, Dad shows up on the nest with a much-appreciated treat for Mom. We hear a lot of the squawk “I’m Hungry” vocalizations from Mom, and a few quiet hooting vocalizations from Dad.

We’re going to be going on “Pip Watch” soon. The owlet inside egg #1 might start to try to break out of the shell any day now. Take a look at our education page for some data on last year’s sequence of events, and see what you think is the most likely day for the first owlet’s HatchDay.

Teachers – Put Your Class On The Map!

February 12, 2016 by Rick Cunningham

Screen Shot 2016-02-12 at 7.14.53 AMMom’s faithfully guarding the eggs and keeping them warm with her brood patch. Here she is seen having just rolled the eggs to move the chicks around in the shell and give them room to develop properly,

Teachers, check out our Education Page where you can view our growing trove of educational information and links and sign up to put your class on the map!

GHOW Arrives In A Gale

January 23, 2016 by Rick Cunningham

In this video from 6:05 am Jan 23, you can just see the female Great Horned Owl on a branch of an adjacent tree – as the wind blows, watch for one of her eyes reflecting the infrared light. She takes off from there and lands in the nest actually being blown backwards to a landing. We’ve said this just about every day for the last week, but do you suppose that this could be the day??


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