[CT Birds] Long-eared Owl Roost, Hartford [1917]

jaybrd49 at aol.com jaybrd49 at aol.com
Fri Dec 8 09:11:14 EST 2017


Long-eared Owl was still being found as a winter resident in the Hartford area up until the late 1970s and even the early 1980s.  During those years, we had three long-eared owls brought to us at Roaring Brook Nature Center after they were hit by cars on the roads.  One bird was dead on arrival.  Two of these owls sustained serious wing injuries and could not be released.  They remained on exhibit at the Nature Center for almost ten years.  I would have to look back in our records, but I believe two of the birds came from Bloomfield.  As an interesting side note, when Frank Gallo was at the Nature Center for an early April concert in the mid to late 80s, he told me he heard a long-eared owl calling in the front of our building.  The only problem...the long-eared owl enclosure was behind the building.  Evidently, our captive owl called in a wild one.  The wild bird was there a second night and then disappeared.  We have not seen or heard another one here for the past 30 years.  We also have not taken any long-eared owl calls since that time.


Jay Kaplan
Canton



-----Original Message-----
From: Robert DeCandido PhD via CTBirds <ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org>
To: ctbirds <ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org>
Sent: Fri, Dec 8, 2017 8:10 am
Subject: [CT Birds] Long-eared Owl Roost, Hartford [1917]

What is believed to be an unusual observation was recorded by the 
undersigned on 4 February 1917, in Goodwin Park, in the outskirts of 
this city [Hartford, CT.]. A telephone message in the morning 
communicated the news that what was supposed to be a Long-eared Owl 
had been seen the previous day. This Owl is not at all common here, 
and so we decided to see for ourselves and verify if possible the 
earlier observation.

Soon after arriving near where the bird had been seen, we found under 
a clump of small hemlock trees an estimated quantity of not less than 
four quarts of pellets, many of which will be gathered and sent to 
Washington for inspection. This in itself was something never before 
seen by either of us, notwithstanding one of us has been hunting 
birds for a great many years and has seen so-called 'flights' of Owls 
and many pellet collections.

A few minutes later one of us discovered in an open-topped pine tree, 
not more than twenty-five feet from the ground, a single specimen of 
the Long-eared Owl. Not daring to move for fear the Owl would not be 
seen by us both, the discoverer of the bird did not stir until joined 
by his companion, who, upon being shown where the single Owl was 
roosting, quickly exclaimed, "There are two, yes three, four, five, 
six, seven, good heavens, how many?" Just then the flock rose and we 
counted eight, and another flew out of a tree ten feet away. We were 
so astonished by our find that we almost lost sight of still another 
Owl who had remained behind. To see ten Long-eared Owls, and nine of 
them in a space not more than six feet square in a single tree, is 
something of an experience, even to us who have been field-students 
for upwards of forty and thirty years respectively. We do not find 
evidence in any book record that shows even half this number being 
seen in a single flock in the state of Connecticut. - C. W. Vibert, 
G. T. Griswold (Hartford Bird Study Club), Hartford, Conn.


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