I was very excited to find a family of Great Horned Owls in Fish Creek Provincial Park, including two juveniles. The owlets were flapping their wings and hopping around from branch to branch. It appears that they can’t quite fly yet, but they’re definitely stretching their wings and getting ready to try!
Fish Creek Provincial Park is massive and there are birds and animals all over the park. From squirrels to coyotes, to White-tailed deer. Great Horned Owls are just one of the many very common birds in the park. There really are lots of them, and I hear reports about them all the time. Having said that, I’m always amazed when I do actually find one, and I have been extremely unsuccessful in the past. In fact I made over 9 trips to Shannon Terrace and Bebo Grove last spring searching for Northern Pygmy Owls, and I never saw even one. It became a running joke with my wife because every time she joined me one one of those trips it snowed. The visibility was usually so poor that we could have walked by a whole flock of owls and we wouldn’t have seen them.
But my luck is much better at the East end of the park near Sikome Lake and Hull’s Wood. I’ve seen owls in that area several times and so I’m not really surprised anymore when I do. Always excited, but not surprised!!
Here are a few more images of the young owlets perching and stretching their wings.