View Full Version : Woo Hoo - Powerful Owl in the yard

03-18-2006, 05:53 AM
The chooks were making a bit of noise half an hour ago - here's the reason:


This is one big owl - 2' long. I'd reckon his wingspan was pushing 4' - and total silence of course. They mainly eat possums - one a day.

Not bad in the 'burbs eh?


03-18-2006, 08:05 AM
Wow! What beautiful eyes you have!

Domesticated_Mr. Know It All
03-18-2006, 08:12 AM
Owl's are good luck. ;)
Great photo Ian. :cool:

Billy Bones
03-18-2006, 11:26 AM
Originally posted by Mr. Know It All:
Owl's are good luck. ;)
Great photo Ian. :cool: +1

Stunning raptors, owls.

Kevin G
03-18-2006, 11:30 AM
Not good luck if they are sitting on your roof. Old Italian woman here abouts a few years ago had one on her roof, and tried like blazes to get it to leave. It stuck around for a couple of days. She did a lot of church going and praying until it was gone.

Paul Girouard
03-18-2006, 11:38 AM
Great photo smile.gif smile.gif How'd you do that ? Flash? I think not :confused: Just hold the shutter open , if so how'd you keep the camera so steady?

One in a palm tree not to far from town,


03-18-2006, 11:41 AM
The are also the totem bird of Athena, goddess of wisdom.

I hear smaller ones making a fuss every Spring when their randy is up, but I rarely see them. We've got a healthy population of barred owls hereabouts. They have a call that is unmistakable.

Did see a great horned owl once in the Rio Grande valley. Roughly the same size as yours. Magnificent.

Which is the NA owl with asymetrical ears that function as locaters of their prey in the dark? Sort of acoustic radar receivers, the asymetry allowing them to find prey within inches in total darkness. A barn owl, I think. Another fascinating bird.

[ 03-18-2006, 11:51 AM: Message edited by: ishmael ]

03-18-2006, 11:44 AM
lol they tend to see you much more then you see them!

Leon m
03-18-2006, 11:56 AM
That is quite a large Owl,What sort of Owl is he?

03-18-2006, 11:59 AM
Was going to ask the same question.
My favorite owl happens to be the Barred....Firstly, I love their call(s).
Now Bubos are fine but...for character...the Barred has them beat!
Followed by Screech...and Saw Whet...

[ 03-18-2006, 11:59 AM: Message edited by: uncas ]

03-18-2006, 03:58 PM
A chook is a chicken. :D

03-18-2006, 05:43 PM
:cool: smile.gif

03-18-2006, 05:45 PM
I still would like to know what kind of owl it is!

03-18-2006, 05:49 PM
Thanks guys. The photo was taken with a Nikon D100 using the internal flash (my "proper" flash was sitting on my desk, but I didn't think I'd have time to put it on the camera). I used a Nikkor AF18-35mm zoom lens on 35mm 1/60 sec at f4.5. - just grabbed the camera and crept up on him till I was about 8' away. This is a crop of the image I took - actually about 1/18th of the image size. I felt a bit guilty using the flash - but the bird was already staring at a 500 watt spotlight - and had no trouble flying into a nearby tree.

Following information on the Powerful Owl from web page (http://www.owlpages.com/owls.php?genus=Ninox&species=strenua)

Size: Female - Length 45-54cm (18-21") Wingspan 112-132cm (44-52") Weight 1050-1600g (37-56.5oz)
Male - Length 48-65cm (19-25.5") Wingspan 115-135cm (45-53") Weight 1130-1700g (40-60oz)

Habits: Lives permanently in pairs. Nocturnal. Roosts by day singly, in pairs or in family groups of 3-4, in foliage or open tree in forest or woodland. They will often roost with the remains of prey clutched in their talons. May be easily approached during the day, but is shy and difficult to observe at night. Flight is slow and deliberate. May be very aggressive in defending the nest. If the female is disturbed during incubation, she will often desert the nest.

Voice: The Powerful Owl's voice is a slowly uttered, rather mournful, loud, two-syllable note that sounds like "woo-hoo", each note lasting just over half a second with a brief pause in between. The second note is often slightly higher pitched than the first, more so in the female than in the male. The male's voice is slightly deeper than female's. There are also various other calls associated with breeding and nesting, including a strange, tremulous, sheep-like bleating uttered be either sex around the nest. This may show anger (when it becomes almost a snarl), anxiety or be used by the female when the male is returning with food.

I know of a potential nesting tree down the bush behind our place - but this is the first time I've seen one of these owls here in over twenty years here. Their status is listed as uncommon to vulnerable.


[ 03-18-2006, 05:50 PM: Message edited by: igatenby ]

03-18-2006, 05:51 PM
Thanks Ian.
Heck, had no idea there was such a beast as a Powerful owl.
Thought you were just being descriptive...as in loud...big...bigger...

03-18-2006, 06:41 PM
As I wrote before. I really like the eyes.
Damn'd if they don't stand out!!!!
Even if the name was Powerful Owl....it is a powerful owl. ;)
Only have a pair of great horned booming back and forth here. I miss the north woods. Again, the barred owl is my favorite.

03-18-2006, 06:45 PM
Powerful Owl! Now that's a name given by people who were busy with the things of survival, not fancy names.

It's interesting how ubiquitous owls are. I'd imagined OZ land didn't have them, what with its array of exotics. But that one looks suprizingly like some of our big owls. And they have to be separated by millions of years of evolution.