Hi and welcome to my Blog, my name is Paul Riddle and I live in south Leicestershire, UK. Back in August 2007 my quest began to locate as many local Little Owl territories as possible. The driving force was a reported decline in the uk numbers so I thought I would do my bit and conduct a study in my area. After 7 years and countless hours out in the field I have detected over 200 different sites. With a thirst for a greater understanding of the owls a more comprehensive monitoring and nest box programme then commenced. This also now includes monitoring the local and very sparse population of Barn Owls, please pop back occasionally and catch up with the life and times of my owls and any other wildlife that I come across. I hope you enjoy your visit!!!

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Barn Surprise!!!

Yesterday whilst owl and about I spent my time checking up on my 21 little owl boxes to see if any had new residents. Unfortunately it was the same story at most sites, not many birds showing so no confirmation either way as yet! However, I have mentioned in a previous post there had been some activity in one box over at Smoke Hall (site 98), both birds were again seen today very near to the nest box and after further enquiries further evidence was found inside the box.......an owl pellet!  I will keep a close but distant vigil at this site to see if nature takes it coarse......fingers crossed. 

Later in the day I visited my box at Port Hill (site 96) and after some 30 minutes of waiting not 1 but 2 little owls were seen coming out of the box!!! This is fantastic news and another site I will be keeping a close eye on over the next few weeks, hopefully an image will follow of the birds going in/out of the box very soon?

Towards late afternoon I was investigating another little owl site that I hadn't been to for some time. This is in an old barn and again no little owls were seen, but what I did see was a real surprise. A pair of barn owls!!!!!! I observed them from no further than 20 feet away! They were sitting together day roosting on a platform, they seemed to be having a good doze and judging by the amount of pellets on the floor (dozens and dozens) they had been using the site for some time, maybe this is now this years selected breeding site.....fingers crossed, again! 

A further note to add to the day was mating taking place at 3 little owl sites, spring is now well and truly underway.

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