Great Gray Owl fledgling, photo by Alex Lamoreaux

GREAT GRAY OWL FLEDGLINGS

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Jun 22, 2020 | by Alex Lamoreaux

Fledgling Great Gray Owl, photo by Alex Lamoreaux

Vast Ponderosa Pine forest broken up by wildflower-filled meadows cover the Cascades of southern Oregon and provides refuge to one of the densest populations of Great Gray Owls in the United States. In fact 10 different owl species can be found in the region, and that’s the reason we now offer a 4-day target tour in search of these incredible birds. I’ve encountered Great Grays on a number of occasions while exploring the Cascades, and I’ve seen them other places too – Minnesota, Alaska, Ontario – but I had never seen a fledgling… until a few days ago! Peter Trueblood, longtime friend to Wildside, and his family discovered nesting Great Grays near their beautiful home near Hyatt Lake! Lauren and I drove up in the afternoon and Peter took us out to look for the owls. Soon after arriving in their territory we started to hear the screeching calls of a young Great Gray! It wasn’t long before we were watching a fluffy, adorable baby Great Gray awkwardly hopping along branches and calling out for some food. Lauren and I quietly sat nearby and watched the little owl’s antics; both having a really hard time believing this little muppet creature would eventually turn into the mighty owl we know. Eventually one adult did arrive to drop off a rodent meal, and we also could hear two other fledglings calling nearby. No other North American bird conjures the almost magical essence of wilderness than a Great Gray Owl, and being able to observe two fledglings was an incredible experience I won’t forget anytime soon.

Fledgling Great Gray Owl, photo by Alex Lamoreaux

Fledgling Great Gray Owl, photo by Alex Lamoreaux

Fledgling Great Gray Owl, photo by Alex Lamoreaux

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