Friday, March 5, 2010

Screech Owl... oh my gawd I am the luckiest me I eva' was

If I told ya how I got this close to the screech owl, ya might not believe me... but I will tell ya'll the story anyway...
I heard a sound outside the house that I thought was my cat meowing for my help, so i stepped out onto the deck and made some lilting, soothing calls of her name - Toots. Suddenly I heard the trill call of the screech owl from the large pine tree, then saw the small owl spread it giant wings and fly across in front of me over to the apple tree. It made another soft trill (go here to listen to the sound) - which I copied back to it. We were talking... me and the owl in both our languages. I have no idea about what.
When I got right underneath it with my camera, after a few pictures it got nervous enough to fly into the more camouflaged branches of the apple tree, rather then sitting on top the lone dead branch.
I quietly walked along under the tree, continuing to talk 'trill' with it - long enough to take a few more pics and get to see it spread it's beautiful wings wide - then fly off, low to the ground and swoop up into another apple tree further up the hill.
According to superstition and the Native American beliefs {described by Tom Brown in The Tracker}, an owl only shows itself to you when someone is going to die. Literally.
I am still happy to see it, I have waited many years to be this close to an owl again.
"These common owls are fearless in defense of their nests and will often strike unsuspecting humans on the head as they pass nearby at night. When discovered during the day, they often freeze in an upright position, depending on their cryptic coloration to escape detection. The two color phases, which vary in their relative numbers according to geography, are not based on age, sex, or season.
Nesting: 3-8 white eggs placed without a nest lining in a cavity in a tree or in a nest box."

Read more about owls in your region at!

XoXoxoxoxo hoo hoo!


Liberty said...

WOW Leslie!
what an amazing experience!
thank you for those photos.
I'm in awe!

Leslie's Gone Oko said...

Thanks Liberty!!
I love owls so much I feel really lucky, even if it comes with a dark superstitious omen.
I only got to be face to face with one other owl, about 4 years ago when it came to live in my wood stove... i heard it scratching in there and thought it was going to be a squirrel. When I opened the wood stove to be 4 inches face to face with a screech owl I dropped my flashlight i was so shocked.
A day later the boyfriend I lived with at that time, his grandmother died.


Wild Canary said...

Leslie! Awesome shots, awesome experience. Wouldn't it be nice if something died that was toxic, just saying.
I have owl stories. Maybe I will write them down in one place...I just love your pics...I will think about them for a long time...thanks for sharing.

Leslie's Gone Oko said...

Wild Canary!

Please share your stories here as much as you'd like, cause i would love to hear them!
pretty please...


Leslie's Gone Oko said...

my grandmaw, Mimi died last night. :(

I think i would like to say that the owl is not a "bad omen" but rather a kind message, to give you time to prepare.


Liberty said...

I'm sorry to hear about your grandma Leslie!
(((((many hugs coming your way)))))