My life is about living with nature – here you can live it with me!

Daytime Barred Owl [video]

barred owl
A hunting Barred Owl in the Rain

This evening I went on a dusk birding trip for some Short-eared Owls within our county (with my birdclub friend Mike D.). This has been a fun project that we have been doing for many years and are never successful in finding any owls (of course). We went a little early this time to look for waterfowl (scouting for tomorrows  trip) and came across this bird. We discussed this large bird we found and trying to decide if it was a Red-tailed Hawk or Rough-legged Hawk (something didn’t look right). We moved my truck for a better angle, pulled the spotting scope out and noticed this bird had dark eyes. Could this have been a Short-eared Owl?? Naaa just a Barred Owl!! Wait . . . it wasn’t even dusk yet??

Sorry about video quality but it was raining hard (noise you hear) and captured the video clip through my spotting scope (reason for being so unsteady). It was a very exciting watching this bird in such an unusual location (farmer’s field), searching for food (during daylight hours) and being as active as it was. After returning home, I remembered reading in the “Life Histories of North American Birds, by A.C. Bent” that Barred Owl’s can be active during daylight hours and can be regularly heard vocalizing during the daytime. I believe he said something about “at times they are more diurnal than nocturnal” (but don’t quote me on that)!! I tried looking for my copy to quote exactly what he said . . . . but my book has seemed to have disappeared (now I need to remember who I let barrow the book)! I guess our find wasn’t as unusual of a find as first expected but it sure was fun to watch.

If you are wondering . . . this was our only owl that we found!!

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29 responses

  1. That was terrific! He didn’t even mind the hard rain, he just kept looking around!
    Awesome 🙂

    15 March 2008 at 12:05 am

  2. Boy, do I ever want to see an owl or any bird that I haven’t seen around for a while. The weekend seemed like it was never going to get here. Great footage. It is amazing how far they can turn their heads around.

    15 March 2008 at 12:46 am

  3. I’ve only seen one real owl in my whole life and I was soo excited.

    Great picture.

    15 March 2008 at 8:03 am

  4. Lisa at Greenbow

    The poor thing must have been mighty hungry to be out in the rain like that. Maybe it was looking for a courting offering.

    15 March 2008 at 8:06 am

  5. Now that is exciting…I love owls! I’m going to start listening for ‘who cooks for you…who cooks for you all’! Thanks for sharing!

    15 March 2008 at 9:26 am

  6. Wow! What a treat! An ample reward for braving that downpour!

    15 March 2008 at 11:07 am

  7. We here them a lot here during the daytime – on gray days especially – but never see them. Lucky you!

    15 March 2008 at 11:52 am

  8. That face reminds me of a wise old man, or Owl in Winnie the Pooh maybe? What a great sighting Tom!

    15 March 2008 at 11:57 am

  9. Great video. It looked like that owl was looking right at you for a moment. Both of you scoping each other. I never get to see owls, so I always appreciate your photographs.

    15 March 2008 at 11:58 am

  10. Exciting find! It is such a delight to see owls and you did a great job shooting video through your scope!

    15 March 2008 at 2:00 pm

  11. Oh-ma-gawd, wonderful! Ahh, what a little sweetie, and such an on point “message” for me right now, a symbolic association with the rain and tears, the owl… A rush watching that video, I wish you could have gotten it taking flight, but it’s still a fabulous video. I love that frame above — it is soooo beautiful, I’d so purchase an image like that … Gonna go watch the video again 🙂

    15 March 2008 at 3:49 pm

  12. Looks like s/he doesn’t have time for bird baths… prefers quick bird showers!

    15 March 2008 at 4:06 pm

  13. Hi Monarch – Love your photo and video. That’s another bird I probably won’t get to see unless I travel back east. Thanks for sharing.

    15 March 2008 at 4:09 pm

  14. What a nice bird. Is it surprising that the owl does not get bothered by the rain, because most owls are hidden away in trees where I assume they can obtain some shelter.

    15 March 2008 at 4:19 pm

  15. @ Chicago – Thanks, I guess we all need to eat and guess they are use to the rain after a while!
    @ Linda – Thanks and there use to be a Great Horned Owl on the Isle every year~! They are great birds for sure!
    @ Sherry/zoo – Get out and you should be able to find them! Thanks
    @ Lisa – I agree that this bird must have been hungry! I am not sure once the females start sitting yet but it is possible!
    @ Barb – thanks and they are vocalizing right now! Do tell us if you find one!
    @ Kathiesbird – thanks and sometimes birding in the weather is better than when it’s nice!
    @ Rurality – I must admit that I have never seen one out hunting like that! It was very exciting!
    @ Jayne – It also reminds me of Winnie the Pooh!! How cool, thanks
    @ Robin – thanks and I am not sure if it was me but did look that direction! It wasn’t the best quality but was fun to see in person!
    @ threecollie – thanks and wasn’t easy!
    @ dovelove – thanks and you know . . . I stopped shooting and turned to my friend . . . once I looked back it had moved! I also would have like to capture it’s flight!
    @ Pinar – we all need our showers! LOL Thanks
    @ Mary Carlson – thanks and trust me this isn’t something common to watch every day!
    @ Scienceguy – thanks and we actually saw many birds out in that rain!

    15 March 2008 at 5:13 pm

  16. Hi Tom,
    Thanks for the video. I so enjoy bird watching with you! I did not feel one drop of that downpour! Owls are very cool. Wonderful clip!

    15 March 2008 at 6:44 pm

  17. This year, over here in eastern NY, we’re hearing more stories of daytime Barred Owls than ever before. What a treat!

    15 March 2008 at 9:03 pm

  18. Marg

    Excellent-love the video-I don’t think you needed to apologize for it at all!

    15 March 2008 at 10:44 pm

  19. Man I love barred owls. They’re so FLOOFY.

    15 March 2008 at 11:09 pm

  20. @ Sherry/Q – Glad I am able to share my birdwatching with you and was probably much warmer than what I experienced! One of these days, I should do a video blog with everyone birdwatching with me! That might be fun to do!
    @ Zen – very cool and was just shocked to find them where we did!
    @ Marg – thanks and I just did the best that I could do!
    @ Susan – thanks and these guys are very floofy but not as floofy when drenched!

    15 March 2008 at 11:15 pm

  21. The video turned out great!

    16 March 2008 at 9:20 am

  22. You are amazing. Really.
    Wonderful – the rain, the owl – you’re being there.

    16 March 2008 at 8:04 pm

  23. Jim

    Beautiful, really beautiful Mon@rch! I’ve had the good fortune to see Short-eared and Saw-whet owls on a few occasions, a Northern Hawk Owl and even a Snowy, but I’d dearly love to get a look at a Barred. Terrific video– thanks for posting it!

    16 March 2008 at 8:12 pm

  24. Cool-I would take any owl video any way I could get it.-I had my chance last year but I was so excited that the camera shook way too much!

    16 March 2008 at 8:44 pm

  25. I love spring mornings Tom, when the barred owl will be making their who cooks for you call, and after every call you will hear 5 or 6 thunderous turkey’s gooble.

    Man I can’t wait for spring 🙂

    16 March 2008 at 10:02 pm

  26. @ YNJ – thanks
    @ Cathy – they sure are! I was very lucky being there! Thanks
    @ Jim – Thanks and I would love to see your Peregrines as often as you get to see them!
    @ Larry – wasn’t my best but was great to have the opportunity to try! I only wish I could have captured this without a tripod!
    @ Bernie – thanks they are such great calls! I can’t wait for the summer when I can leave my windows open and hear them!

    16 March 2008 at 11:06 pm

  27. What a beautiful owl! Thanks so much for sharing this video. And the picture is so beautiful I had to go to flickr to “fave” it. 🙂

    17 March 2008 at 7:23 pm

  28. WOW, I really don’t care what kind of owl it was, that was a wonderful video with or without sound. And I love the shot on the post. I am truly envious, I want to see owls so badly! Maybe I will follow your advise and try later in the evening.
    So glad you posted, thanks!!

    24 March 2008 at 1:53 pm

  29. Hayden

    I got the chance to see one of those a couple weeks ago and i thought it was amazing…untill it attacked my girlfriends 30 pound dog and us a few times. It was pretty cool though. I have a new respect for owls.

    9 September 2008 at 1:02 am

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