Owls

Hi Everyone,

new to this, just joined today. I have been a keen amateur bird watcher all my life. i have recently moved to a small village near Ledbury. We encourage al the small garden birds with lots of food.

The usual's, Robins, all manner of tits etc etc. to the rear of my house is fields with a small amount of woodland. I walk my dogs each morning and currently it is dark when I do. Every morning I see the same bird, sometimes a pair. I'm pretty sure its an owl of some kind but not certain which type. I haven't heard its call yet but what I can say is that it is very large. I would say as big if not bigger than a Buzzard.

I have done a little research and the short eared owl seems the most likely but also the European eagle owl may be a contender although unlikely.

I would really appreciate any advice on this.

Many Thanks

  • If it was an Eagle Owl it would probably be an escapee as some people do keep them in captivity In one or two areas feral birds have bred but that is very rare. These are very large solid looking birds and are very protective of their territory. It may be worth looking at Barn Owl which would look very. light coloured or Tawny Owl which is the most likely one in built up areas despite being a woodland bird. If it is a Short Eared it is a very nice sighting and Long Eared is a possibility. It may be worth visiting the B.T.O, web pages as they have some very good i.d. videos also YouTube has videos which might help more than descriptions in a field guide.

    Pete

    Birding is for everyone no matter how good or bad we are at it,enjoy it while you can

  • In reply to Seaman:

    Hi Pete,

    appreciate the response. I'm 99% certain its not a Barn Owl. Its far too big and dark for that and too big for a Tawny too. I'm leaning towards short eared owl. There is a pair. Its tricky to get a good view as its always dark when i see them.

    I'll check out that site

    Many Thanks
  • Dinger, keep an eye on the area during daylight as S E Owls will hunt in the daytime

    Pete

    Birding is for everyone no matter how good or bad we are at it,enjoy it while you can

  • In reply to Seaman:

    Hi Pete,

    Having looked through the BTO site I'm not 100% convinced it is a SE Owl now :-(

    the size doesn't seem to match up. This one I see really is quite big and has a much bigger wing span than a Tawny. I also haven't seen it during the day but that doesn't mean its not been there obviously.

    I guess I'm no further forward lol
  • Dinger would be fairly certain of id if it was Eagle Owl going on my limited experience with them. Several keepers in our area keep them for some dark reason and when the odd one gets free it causes havoc among local wildlife and some smaller pets. From what I'm reading now maybe Robbos suggestion of Buzzard fits and his dog walk is close to the birds roost.

    Pete

    Birding is for everyone no matter how good or bad we are at it,enjoy it while you can

  • In reply to Seaman:

    I understand what everyone is saying and I also agree that the chances of it being anything other than a Buzzard are slim but I have also seen it at night flying over my house pretty low. Thinking about it there is a birds of prey centre just down the road. I may pop in and see if anything has escaped recently