03 March 2007

Endangered Species of the Week, 4 Mar 2007

Northern Spotted Owl (Strix occidentalis caurina)

The Northern Spotted Owl is one of three Spotted Owl subspecies, the other two being the California and Mexican. Although Spotted Owls are not in danger of extinction, this particular subspecies may be. Although hard data is lacking, it is likely that they are very close to being endangered or extinct due to loss of old-growth forests. Their range extends from Southern British Columbia to Northern California.

This particular species is meaningful to me, as I had a chance to spend a day with a researcher keeping track of these birds in Washington State. He located the birds by hooting at them (he was quite good), and listening for their response. Then we captured, weighed, banded, and released two young owlets. They were very docile, and just sat there and watched as we handled their sibling. I took this photograph of the mother owl, who also simply watched as we handled her babies.

1 comment:

Garfman said...

That is a wonderful photograph, and I am envious of your banding experience.