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Northern Hawk Owl by Larry Halverson

Hawk owl seenPosted: July 10, 2012

By Larry Halverson/Friends of Kootenay

Paul Adamus, a Kootenay National Park visitor, sent this interesting observation note.
“Yesterday (6/30) while hiking the Marble Canyon trail from the trail head on Rt 93, several miles in I heard and then saw at close range a Hawk-Owl, a species I’ve seen many times before. The coordinates were approximately 51.2517, -116.2145. Is this location known? I saw only one bird, but iBird describes the call that I heard as “fledgling solicitation call.”

What makes the observation so interesting is the possibility of a second Northern Hawk Owl nesting record for Kootenay Park. The first record (below) in 2006 was made by Dean and Valerie Nicholson, visitors from Cranbrook.

“Of interest, on July 30, Valerie and I were driving through Kootenay Park. Approximately 13km west of Marble Canyon we observed an owl in a tree. We stopped and id’d it as a Northern Hawk Owl. Suddenly a second flew in beside it and both made continued hissing screeches. Across the highway we could hear a strange chirping like the single chirp that a Douglas Squirrel makes. Going into the woods we came across at least six Hawk Owls. Many were perched while others flew in and out. At one point I could see four owls in front of me and hear two other birds calling. Some of the birds had the banding on the breast and stomach but had a thin buffy band just below the neck. I assumed these might be juveniles and that we had found evidence of a very southerly breeding record.”

See previous post on Northern Hawk Owls.

Above image: Northern Hawk Owl, January 16, 2012 at 12:15 pm, along Hwy 93, 2.5 miles south of the Floe Lake trail head. Photo Larry Halverson

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