The owl files – Chapter 4: They keep missing each other . . . or where’s the mouse?

11 May 2023

They keep missing each other .  .  .  or where’s the mouse?

Since the last update, the female has been leaving her roost in the Evergreen Oak early and spending the afternoon and early evening under the overhang of the Function Room roof. She has been regularly regurgitating pellets while on the roof, and I have now collected these to check on what sort of prey the owls are targeting (more on that in a later post).

The male has either stayed in his spot or flown down to ‘his’ windowsill. He typically starts calling early but, after the promising duetting between the pair a few days ago, the female has not been responding. The male then flies off to the trees at the back of the building .  .  . and the female usually follows a few minutes later. Still no calling!

Yesterday evening things started more promisingly – the male called from the windowsill .  .  .  and the female responded. Instead of joining her on the roof however, he again flew to the trees behind the Centre where he continued to call. The female then flew up onto the parapet of the Function Room roof – but did not call again. The male then flew up to the nest box, entered, and started to give his quite “hoo. hoo. hoo. hoo . . .” enticement calls, trying to get the female to come to the nest. The female showed no interest however, and after about 5 minutes the male flew off towards the school.

He really needs to offer her a mouse to sweeten the deal!

By Geoff Lockwood