[birding] Owl calls

Lisa Millbank millbank.lisa at gmail.com
Tue Mar 20 16:39:10 PDT 2018


There could be a few reasons for this, but maybe it's due to the difference
in timing of breeding between those species.  Great Horned Owls begin their
courtship very early, so they're very vocal from late fall through
mid-winter.  By now, most pairs have youngsters in their nests and do not
call as frequently.  Sometimes, only males can be heard giving their low
pitched, 4-note call when females are sitting on eggs or chicks.
Incubating or brooding females often make a quiet clucking sound in
response to the male hooting, but it can only be heard very close to the
nest.

Western Screech-Owls' courtship begins in late winter, and they nest in the
spring.  They're probably calling more frequently right now.  In general,
Great Horned and Western Screech-Owls are year-round residents and probably
don't go far once they've found a mate and a territory.

Lisa Millbank

On Tue, Mar 20, 2018 at 4:05 PM, Shawn & Paul Jacobsen <
spjacobsens at hotmail.com> wrote:

> Over the last months as I would go out before dawn for the morning paper I
> would almost always hear a Great Horned Owl hooting, sometimes near,
> sometimes far, but always in the same general location.  This last week I
> am now hearing a Western Screech Owl (the bouncing ball call, unless I have
> the wrong owl) calling from that area,  but I haven't heard the Great
> Horned during that time.
>
> Does the Great Horned Owl migrate away in the spring, with Western Screech
> Owl then moving in?  I would be interested in knowing.
>
> Thanks, Paul
> Out past Bald Hill, Corvallis
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