Barn owls apparently have very good vision...but their hearing is incredible...they are able to pinpoint the location of the faintest sounds. They pounce on their prey in total darkness.
Barn Owls are monogamous...one mate for life. If a mate should die, they will not find a new one until much time has passed. During courtship, males present the females with gifts of food (not a bad idea!). He also feeds her while she incubates the eggs. Her more brownish coloring may allow her better camouflage when sitting on the eggs. Four to six eggs are laid at two-day intervals...and incubation of about 32 days begins as soon as the first is laid, so the first to hatch may be two weeks old when the last hatches. The baby owls leave the nest at about 60 days...and here's how they look at this time...
(The previous two photos are compliments of Dr. Clegg.)
Barn Owls do not hoot as some owls do, but have a rather blood-curdling scream. We also hear a lot of hissing....and a chattering sound on occasion.
So we are doing our part in preserving these most strange and wonderful birds by allowing Dr. Clegg to use our century old barn as a nesting ground...and we quite enjoy having them on our farm!
Now that my class has come to an end...let me just clarify a few of yesterday's mysteries! The mistress of the home with 'bride in the bushes' happened to walk by yesterday...so I ran out to the road to have a chat. Here's the scoop...her grandchildren dressed her naked garden statue in a wedding gown over the weekend. She said they are always appalled by her unclothed garden statue, and took matters into their own hands. She had a good laugh when I told her what a stir they had caused...and today I see a naked woman standing among the shrubs next door!
Yes, the lily capital of Canada is...Neepawa, Manitoba! It is not only the lily capital of Canada...but has also been declared the World Lily Capital, with over 2000 varieties of lilies growing in the area. My niece is getting married near there this summer...and we have made arrangements to stay in Neepawa. I'm looking forward to a fine time in Manitoba...and hope that the mosquitoes cooperate with our plans!
Now that we have solved the mysteries of the moment...it's time to get on with the day. The sun is shining...the yard is calling...and I'm on my way out.