Joburg’s Spotted Eagle Owlets

The family that owns the property and runs the streaming cam for the Joburg Spotted Eagle Owl box loves Harry Potter. They named the male to honour the central character of the books and films, Harry Potter! No surprises there. The female is Heroine. They hatched two owlets, Gryffindor and Huff and one adopted owlet, a week older than theirs, Slytherin.

The family has built many owl boxes over the years, some with sides and some without. They also indicate that the owls do not require boxes at all.

Hermoine. 15 October 2021

African Spotted Eagle Owls are incredibly beautiful. While they are part of the larger species of ‘Eagle’ Owls, they are actually small, growing to only 45 cm (or 18 inches) in length. They weight 454 grams to 907 grams (or 1 -2 lbs). That said, its wingspan reaches up to 1 metre (3.2 feet) and like all owls, it is silent when it hunts. The feathers are a brownish-grey and, normally, marked with white spots and blotches. Looks like a Donegal tweed to me. Just lovely. The eyes are yellow and are quite large. The Spotted Eagle Owl has ear tufts similar to the Great Horned Owl.

Adult African Spotted Eagle Owl. Wikimedia Commons.

This image is of a juvenile. What a cutie. For those who watched the Great Horned Owl use the Bald Eagle nest on Farmer Derek’s property last year, you will remember how fluffy and cute those little owlets were. But look at that sharp beak. These owls are serious predators. Do not underestimate them ever.

Juvenile African Spotted Eagle Owl. Wikimedia Commons.

A similar owl box in Africa showing the female with chicks in the box. She is feeding them.

A Spotted Eagle Owl in flight, hunting. Look at that wing span. Wow.

At 19:25:31, Gryffindor, the only remaining owl in the box fludged and joined his sibling Huff on the platform below the owl box.

Look at those beautiful eyes and little talons and beak. Gryffindor looks like a stuffed toy sitting, just looking around.

Huff is down on the platform and Gryffindor is very curious about what he is doing.

That curiosity got the best of him and off he went, over the edge of the box to join his sibling. It will not be long til they are on the ground wandering around the family’s car port waiting for Hermoine to bring food.

Oh, owls are so cute! But deadly.

For those of you that watched Bonnie and Clyde last year take over the Bald Eagle nest on Farmer Derek’s property, Farmer Derek has that streaming cam on. The GHOW have been seen! Will they begin working on the nest soon and raise owlets again? Stay tuned. Here is the link to that streaming cam:

It has been a horrible last 24 hours for the birds in Manitoba. We are still under a snow advisory and some birds got caught here that should be well on their way south. One of those was some European Starlings. I had 5 or 6 in the garden yesterday as the snow began to come down at noon. They left a few hours later after eating. Larger numbers were spotted south of me.

European Starling 11 November 2021

It is just miserable out there today. Dyson, the squirrel who eats like he has a vacuum inside him —- or like Ervie aka Little Bob at Port Lincoln – decided laying in the one feeder tray was a good way to get as much food while preventing anyone else from eating. He quickly ran away when he saw me coming!

The goal was to get all of the wet seed out, clean and refill the feeders – a bit. The snow caused the seed to just clump and clog up the feeders. Thankfully, the birds will just kick it aside but it was so wet that most of the seed had frozen and would not go down the hopper. For now, though, everyone is taken care of and there are still no new snowflakes. Fingers crossed.

We had 11 degree C temperatures and then it plummeted and then more snow in 24 hours than we have had for years.

I will be checking on the Port Lincoln Ospreys and Yarruga later today, once they wake up and start moving. If you missed it, WBSE 27 is doing well and will be released shortly back into an area around the Newington Armory. I will also check for updates on Grinnell.

Take care everyone. Stay safe. Do not go outside if it is slippery and icy. Whatever you think you need to do can wait! No one wants to fall. Thank you for stopping by.

Thank you to EcoSolutions Joburg Owls streaming cam where I took my screen shots.

1 Comment

  1. Linda Kontol says:

    Thanks again Mary Ann for another cute story ! The little owlets are so cute!💕💕
    Be careful that you don’t fall either. The snow is very pretty! Thanks for all the lovely photos!
    Will be looking forward to Grinell update too!
    Take care,
    Linda

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