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2017 Owl Prowls
at Starr Ranch Sanctuary from 6:30 to 8:30 pm
 
Friday, March 24 - 1 spot available
Saturday, March 25 - Full
Friday, March 31 - Full
Saturday, April 1 - 1 spot available
 
The Owl Prowl is a short nighttime excursion into Starr Ranch Sanctuary. Our evening will begin with an orientation in the classroom where we will watch some Barn Owls by means of the live cam. Pete DeSimone, who has been Manager of Starr Ranch Sanctuary since the mid 1980's and knows all about the owls and hawks which inhabit Bell Canyon, will talk with us about the Barn Owls and answer our questions about owl behavior. Pete may also show the group the Great Horned Owl which lives at Starr Ranch as a resident owl in captivity. Because of an injury he suffered early in life, he is unable to live on his own in the wild. We will then board the big open bed truck for a short ride down the Canyon to search for some owls. At each stop, Pete will play some recordings of owl calls while we listen carefully for owl responses and watch for any sight of them.
 
Live Owl Webcam at Starr Ranch
Check out the owl webcam at Starr Ranch. Pete DeSimone set up a camera on a nest cavity high in a eucalyptus tree at Starr Ranch, focused on a Barn Owl family. You can look directly into the cavity and watch the owls moving around in there; you can also hear them. It's a great opportunity to watch these interesting birds! http://www.starrranch.org/blog/barn-owl
 
How To Sign Up for These Trips:
Advance reservations are necessary for these trips because there is limited room in the truck. Trip fee is $25 per person. Make check payable to: Sea & Sage Audubon and mail it to: Owl Prowl, c/o Nancy Kenyon, 32 Almond Tree Ln, Irvine CA 92612. Be sure to include your email address for trip confirmation and information as well as your phone number in case Nancy needs to contact you at the last minute. These trips are very popular and fill up quickly, so do not wait until the last minute to sign up!
 
Here is a report on one of our Owl Prowl trips
Audubon CA Starr Ranch Sanctuary is a wonderful place during daylight hours; at night, it becomes almost magical. The sky was completely covered by a soft gray blanket of clouds that evening so there were no stars or moon to shed their light on the canyon. Due to the cloud cover, the temperature was quite warm and the air reverberated with the sounds of the Cricket Chorus. The oaks and sycamores formed dark silhouettes against the hillside above us and the sweet scent of grass and sage brush filled the night air. As Pete slowly drove the truck down the bumpy dirt road into Bell Canyon, he made frequent stops for the Common Poorwills which were sitting in the road. They appeared to be confused by the sudden brilliance of our truck’s headlights and did not fly off until we were almost on top of them. Though we did not actually see an owl, we definitely heard them, first the Barn Owls near the classroom, then several Western Screech-Owls along the way, and finally, a lone Great Horned Owl calling his soft mellow hoot from a dense thicket of trees. It was a wonderful night to be out in the gentle wilderness of Starr Ranch and we were reluctant to leave its quiet solitude.
 
Trip Leader: Pete DeSimone
Reservations: Nancy Kenyon
 
updated March 23, 2017

 

 


Sea & Sage Audubon Society
PO Box 5447 • Irvine, CA 92616 • 949-261-7963

http://www.seaandsageaudubon.org