Saturday, 16 February 2013

To owl or not to owl...

The Safari went back to Australia this arvo watching the film Red Dog with Wifey set way up on the NW coast of the Pilbara some 1600 miles north of Maroo Wildlife Refuge where we think the threatening fires have been brought under control; that's about the same distance as from Blackpool to Barcelona or about 1/2 way across WA - it's a vast place! At times you can feel the wide open spaces of the NW WA, smell the heat and taste the red dust...The dog looks a bit like Frank would do if he had pointy ears. we get all emotional at the part when...well we won't spoil it for you you'll have to watch it  yourselves.
After the film we went up the road a few miles to look for the Short Eared Owls that have been hunting the rough ground adjacent a school. As soon as we got there we thought we might be on a loser as there were dog walkers all over the place. But we were very pleasantly surprised by a Barn Owl (105) appearing mid-afternoon. A Buzzard soaring over a big flock of Starlings heading to thee pier and a Kestrel floated around from lighting post to fence posts and back.
Behind us the sun was setting over a very calm sea where a couple of flocks of Eiders were bobbing about and another flying towards us from the south. Couldn't find any mammals though.
In the field we got another couple of views of he Barn Owl but it wouldn't come close enough for a pic in the fast fading light. A Curlew flew out of low spot which got us thinking for a millisecond it might have been one of the Shorties. A Mistle Thrush was there too and we thought we heard a Skylark going over but we weren't concentrating enough and didn't hear it again...can't believe we've not had one yet this year!
The Pink Footed Geese went south while we were watching the Kestrel shifting to another vantage point - not windy enough for hovering today.
With still no sign of the Shorties we called it a day.
Back at Base Camp we had a rummage through the clips of video that Stealth-cam had recorded from its new hiding place on the garage roof. Hardly Oscar winning filming!
Herring Gull
Where to next? Might try getting back to the school very early doors tomorrow before we join the Shoresearch crew.
In the meantime let us know who's out when they shouldn't be and not out when they should be in your outback.


Warren Baker said...

Only had my first Skylark of the month today Davyman, had very few sightings in January too, a sorry state of affairs ;-(

Aussie Glen said...

A puddle on the roof hope it does not leak.....