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February 2012


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Ken or Rebecca Vail <[log in to unmask]>
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Ken or Rebecca Vail <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 7 Feb 2012 17:25:43 -0700
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I altered my usual route to work this morning to search for the two Snowy Owls on 700th St. reported by Brett and Janice Culver on Sunday.  I found one of owls sitting on a steel post marking a field entrance alongside the road at 7:00 AM.  This was 2/10ths of a mile east of CR 3 (130th Ave.) on 700th St.  I then proceeded west on 700th and found the "700th St." Snowy Owl on a utility pole west of 110th Ave at 7:05.

Last weekend there were probably 10 carloads of birders searching for the 700th St. Snowy in vain (except the Culvers).  I'm pretty confident that the Culvers found two new Snowy Owls and not the "700th".  I know I'm not expected to produce the bird but I do feel some sense of responsibility because I've been making the reports.  It's like a fishing guide taking his clients out to his favorite hot spot...'they were biting here yesterday.'  I believe the key to seeing this owl is being in the area early before sunrise or late after sunset, between the hours of 7 to 8 AM and 5 to 6 PM.  This morning as I approached the owl's favorite stretch of road a feed truck reached the area first and my hopes of the owl being on a pole dimmed.  The truck's passing did not flush the owl but as I slowed to observe the owl it did flush.  This one seems a bit skittish.

This has been a remarkable month in this corner of Dodge Co.  There have been probably five different Snowy Owls here, all within 3 miles of my house!

For anyone interested I do have a Google Map available showing most of the locations where these birds have been seen.

Ken Vail
Blooming Prairie

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