Audublog

Starr Ranch Barn Owl webcam update: good news and bad news

February 6th, 2012 · by Garrison Frost

If you’ve been watching the Starr Ranch Barn Owl webcam lately, you know that a lot has been going on. The good news is that the chicks are doing well and are amazing to watch. The bad news is that the male owl perished just a few days after the last chick was born a few weeks ago. Typically in nature, the disappearance of the male would have dire consequences for the young owls, so as we work to find a solution for them, we’re supplying food to the nest.

Barn Owl chicks rely heavily on the male to get most of their food during their early life when the female can only leave to hunt for short periods of time. During this time the female’s main responsibility is to keep the chicks warm. But under any circumstance it takes both adults to bring enough to feed five mouths. Regular viewers of the webcam know that we are philosophically against interfering with the natural progress of the owls. Nonetheless, in this situation, we’ve been putting food in the nest while trying to  find a solution for them.

Starr Ranch staff have been in close contact with experts who tell us that removing the chicks to a rehabilitation facility is not a good solution. A much better option would be to try and place the chicks in other Barn Owl nests that have chicks about the same age. So we’re looking for other nests right now.

If you visit the webcam, you’ll see the female with the chicks, and it’s quite a sight to see. But please bear in mind that we’re supporting these chicks artificially for the time being until we can find a better situation for them. Please understand that while we’re doing the best we can, there are limits to what we can do.

Categories: Bird videos · Birding · Starr Ranch Sanctuary

2 Comments so far ↓

  • ifyowl

    On Feb 3rd the males body found half a mile from the nest. Absent 2 weeks yet dead only 2 or 3 days. No obvious injuries, not thin looking. Old age ? Disease ? Mystery ! Awaiting autopsy. Meanwhile Mom’s doing her best with Pete’s help. Owlets maturing pretty well.

  • Kim Rose

    My best friend works at Liberty Wildlife in Arizona,they take in all native AZ wildlife. If you contact them ask for Jan Miller,she is the vet tech and responsible for most of the birds that come in. I bet my bottom dollar she can help or find someone who can. They rescue thousands of birds a year and are an amazing group,please contact them……