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Entries about understanding owls

Understanding Owls - Land For Wildlife - QLD

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Talon a Masked Owl

One evening I was so excited to go with Hannah to a Land For Wildlife talk on Understanding Owls by Raptor Vision (who I thank for the photos below).
Land for Wildlife brings together like-minded landholders to share skills and knowledge about nature conservation. It is a vibrant, progressive program that aims to protect native wildlife and flora for the benefit of future generations. To date over 50,000 hectares of habitat for wildlife has been protected with a further 3700 hectares under restoration, just in South East Queensland.

Luna a Barn Owl
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Barn Owls are moderately common, but generally hard to see, as they are mostly active at night. During the day, the birds roost on concealed tree branches. They are the most widespread and familiar of the owls. Barn Owls are medium sized birds (females slightly larger than males), with a 'heart-shaped' facial disc. They have sandy orange and light grey upperparts and white to cream underparts. Both the back and breast are evenly spotted with black. Birds often appear whiter than normal when illuminated in car headlights or torches. Young birds are similar to adults in plumage. When threatened, the Barn Owl crouches down and spreads its wings.
The Barn Owl is found throughout Australia. Its distribution is limited only by habitat and food availability.

China a Masked Owl
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The Masked Owl has three basic plumage forms: pale, intermediate and dark. The plumage pattern remains similar in each case. The facial disc is chestnut to white, edged with a darker ring and darker around the bill and below the eyes. The upper parts vary from blackish-brown to grey-white and are liberally spotted with grey and white. The underparts are rufous to white, speckled with dark brown. Sexes are similar in plumage, but the females are markedly larger and generally darker than the males. Young Masked Owls are white to cream in colour when first fledged. After the first year, they closely resemble the adults but may be more heavily streaked. Tasmanian birds are larger than those on the mainland. This species is the largest Tyto owl and the second largest of the nocturnal birds (night birds) in Australia (the largest is the Powerful Owl, Ninox strenua ).
Wesley a Masked Owl
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The Masked Owl is larger and generally darker than the Barn Owl.
The range of the Masked Owl is a broad coastal band around most of mainland Australia and throughout Tasmania, and for the most part is less than 300 km from the coast. Population numbers are low on the mainland and several states give this species special conservation status. This owl was previously widespread in Tasmania.

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Eclipse a Barking Owl
The Barking Owl is a medium-sized hawk-owl. Hawk-owls lack the definite heart-shaped face of the tyto-owls (which include the Barn Owl, Tyto alba). Adult Barking Owls are grey-brown above, with white spots on the wings, and whitish below, heavily streaked with grey-brown. The head is almost entirely grey-brown, and the eyes are large and yellow. Young Barking Owls have less streaking on the underparts and are mottled white and grey-brown on the rear of the neck. Barking Owls are nocturnal birds (night birds), although they may sometimes be seen hunting during the day.
Barking Owls are widely distributed throughout Australia, but are absent from central areas

The video clip gives a little preview to the evening (although be thankful you're sitting in the warm watching it!

The Barking Owl is a medium-sized hawk-owl. Hawk-owls lack the definite heart-shaped face of the tyto-owls. They have an extremely characteristic voice that can range from a barking dog noise to a shrill woman-like scream of great intensity. Barking owls are often said to be the source to the myths and legends surrounding the Bunyip (a large mythical creature from Australian Aboriginal mythology, said to lurk in swamps, billabongs, creeks, riverbeds, and waterholes).

Posted by charlystyles 13:07 Archived in Australia Tagged land_for_wildlife understanding_owls Comments (0)

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