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Post Info TOPIC: Tawny Owls


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RE: Tawny Owls


OK. Thank you.

Roger.

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Blessed is the man who expecteth little reward ..... for he shall seldom be disappointed.


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Unfortunately the camera is currently not working. There is a technical issue with the camera and the person who set it up is wary of attempting to fix it with bird flu being around and the risk of disturbing the bird. It's a shame as there's a screen set up in Bury Town centre where people could watch it. 



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Peter Johnson wrote:

This is one of our Tawny Owl sites where we have a plastic barrel. The owner of the house has recently installed a camera and shared the link for a live feed. It is available here - 

 

https://lingomigo.com/News/GET/4





Hi Pete, this link now showing "camera not available" ....... has it give up the ghost ???

Roger.

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The Tawny Owls now have three eggs. With all the adverse weather conditions of late hopefully all will be well. 



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This is one of our Tawny Owl sites where we have a plastic barrel. The owner of the house has recently installed a camera and shared the link for a live feed. It is available here - 

 

https://lingomigo.com/News/GET/4



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We have had 35 young Tawny Owls this year from 20 occupied boxes. We had a further 3 boxes with evidence to suggest Tawny's had also bred in them but unfortunately they had fledged. We also had 2 boxes occupied in Lancashire with a further 4 young giving us an overall total of 39. Our overall total for Tawny Owls now stands at 823 young.

We have had 10 occupied Kestrel boxes this year with 39 young. There was also an addition of one young Kestrel from Wild Wings bird sanctuary which was successfully added to a brood of 3 giving us a total of 40. Our overall total of Kestrels now stands at 512 young.

We have had only one brood of Barn Owls this year with 3 young. A young bird was also added to the brood making 4 young. Our overall total of Barn Owls is 77 young.

We have had one brood of Little Owls with 2 young this year. Looking back through our records the last time we had Little Owls breeding was in 2012. Our overall total of Little Owls stands at 77 young.

Peter & Norma Johnson with Rob Archer



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Due to the Coronavirus it is highly unlikely that we will be checking our boxes this year. Fortunately we have several boxes in private gardens like this one - https://youtu.be/eRFeYZzg-wk where I was kindly sent this short video taken on a mobile phone yesterday. It is one of two young Tawny Owls. They are several weeks early as we normally start checking in the 3rd week of April/1st week of May when eggs are normally just hatching although there are lots of reports of early breeding no doubt because of the mild winter we have just had.



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Fantastic!


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Top work Peter, so very well done. 



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David Shallcross



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This year we have had 19 occupied boxes with 26 young.

We also had Jackdaws in 6 owl boxes with 24 young.

I first started erecting Tawny Owl boxes up in 1993 but only started keeping records from 1999. Since that time we have recorded 753 young.

We have had 6 pairs of Kestrels with 23 young. Since 1999 we have had 439 young.

There have been 5 pairs of Barn Owls with 19 plus young. 2 of those pairs were outside Greater Manchester. Since 2014 we have had 53 young but that includes sites in Lancashire.

Thanks to Rob Archer for his help this year.

 



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I'd have to agree Adrian ... Peter and Norma do put an exceptional amount of time, effort and cash into their box projects which pay great dividends each year .. ( though I've got him down as No3 on my list below Seb Coe and Geraint Thomas)



-- Edited by rob archer on Sunday 5th of August 2018 09:33:18 AM

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You are without peers in your dedication and it must be so satisfying to know that your efforts produce such wonder...there are few I am envious of in this world but you are up there occupying no1 spot as far as I am concerned.





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I thought it best to post this here rather than creating separate threads -

We have 8 pairs of Kestrels breeding this year with a total of 30 young, 3 dead and 1 unhatched egg giving an average of 3.75 per box.

We also have 4 pairs of Barn Owl with a total of 10 young, 2 of which were in Greater Manchester with a total of 4 young, 2 dead young and 1 unhatched egg.

 



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We have 20 pairs breeding this year. With a total of 30 young, 1 dead young and 8 unhatched eggs giving an average of 1.5 per box.

In a private garden with a camera in the box at Walmersley the first egg was laid on 27th March. The female sat for 60 days before abandoning 3 eggs on 25th May.
 
In another private garden on checking the box on 15th May the female flew out. There was no eggs. There's a camera in this box as well but was not running at that time. On 29th June the home owner rang to tell us the camera was working and there was 1 young in the box, which subsequently fledged on 13th July.


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Peter Johnson wrote:

We finished with 32 occupied TO boxes this year, which is a record number for us. There were 57 young at an average of 1.78 per box.

We also had a record number of 9 occupied Kestrel boxes this year. There were 33 young at an average of 3.6 per box. One box had 4 young on the first visit and only 1 on the second visit. The same box 2 years ago had 4 young on the first visit and none on the second visit. They were obviously predated. The culprits could possibly have been Buzzard, Tawny Owl or Jackdaw.

We also had 3 occupied Barn Owl boxes with 12 young at an average of 4 per box.

We have not had any Little Owl breeding on any site since 2012. At Elton in previous years we have had LO breeding at 7 different sites but none at all for the last 5 years. As far as I'm aware there are no Little Owls at Elton anymore, unless someone knows differently.

Pete & Norma Johnson & Rob Archer


Your dedication is impressive. 



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https://www.flickr.com/photos/24940353@N03/



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We finished with 32 occupied TO boxes this year, which is a record number for us. There were 57 young at an average of 1.78 per box.

We also had a record number of 9 occupied Kestrel boxes this year. There were 33 young at an average of 3.6 per box. One box had 4 young on the first visit and only 1 on the second visit. The same box 2 years ago had 4 young on the first visit and none on the second visit. They were obviously predated. The culprits could possibly have been Buzzard, Tawny Owl or Jackdaw.

We also had 3 occupied Barn Owl boxes with 12 young at an average of 4 per box.

We have not had any Little Owl breeding on any site since 2012. At Elton in previous years we have had LO breeding at 7 different sites but none at all for the last 5 years. As far as I'm aware there are no Little Owls at Elton anymore, unless someone knows differently.

Pete & Norma Johnson & Rob Archer



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These are our nest box breeding records for 2015.

These records are for our Tawny Owl boxes -

Tawny Owl
25 occupied boxes with 49 young, 1.96 young per box.

Stock Dove
6 occupied boxes. Number of young unknown.

We had Squirrel's Drey's in 19 boxes.


Here's some records for other species -

Kestrel
6 occupied boxes with 27 young, 4.5 young per box.
Site A - 6 young. Total young from this site 52.
Site B - 5 young. Total young from this site 60.
Site C - 3 young. Total young from this site 57.
Site D - 6 young. Total young from this site 19.
Site E - 1 young. Total young from this site 1.
Site F - 6 young. Total young from this site 30.

Barn Owl
2 occupied boxes. Site 1 had 4 young. Site 2 is in Lancashire and has 2 young.

Nuthatch
1 pair in a Tit box. Number of young unknown. I would have had to break the mud seal around the hole to check them and I thought it best to leave them alone.

House Sparrow
1 pair in our gable end in a box put up for Swift. Number of young unknown.

A special mention must go to Andy Little who very kindly donated six 8' x 4' sheets of marine ply enabling us to carry on our work.


-- Edited by Peter Johnson on Saturday 4th of July 2015 05:10:31 PM

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An interesting night with the female leaving to bring back food and the Male bringing food in to the nest - the chicks are growing rapidly now and if you watch closely you will see the chicks swallowing both a frog and a mouse whole.

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You can go here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCX_LBgnzo9hnptTZf1igUAA to view some videos recorded by Mike Killelea showing recent events in one of our boxes.

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We had an early one last year Pete http://btoringing.blogspot.co.uk/2014/01/early-owl-action.html

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Mike Price http://www.pdrmg.co.uk/ http://arnfieldbirds.blogspot.com/


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Over the past few weeks I have noted Pigeons on eggs, lots of rooks nesting and magpies, have placed a fledgling Pigeon back on the nest, in Manchester town centre.

Perhaps its not as cold as we humans think !!.

Keep Birding.

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This morning whilst evicting squirrels from some of my boxes I came across a female Tawny Owl sat on eggs / young. Considering they don't normally hatch until towards the end of April this is a really early start. I presume it's due to the relatively mild weather up till the last few weeks. It begs the question how many more Tawnys have started early.

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Peter Johnson wrote:



Grey squirrels are an absolute nightmare and cause a lot of problems. In the winter of 2012 / 2013 we only had 9 pairs of Tawny Owls from around 70 boxes with nearly 50 taken up by squirrels dreys. With it being such a bad winter the squirrels took up residence early, thus not allowing Tawny Owls into the boxes.

I generally have 2 boxes per site. The thinking behind it is if squirrels get in one box the Tawnys might go in the other. At least it might give me a better chance.

The mild conditions over the last winter seemed to help us as we didn't have too many dreys, allowing the Tawny Owls to take up residence. I don't have the exact figures to hand as to how many of the boxes were occupied by squirrels.

Like any other type of nest box it really should be sighted in an easterly direction or in a sheltered position. There is no preference whatsoever in trees. I normally like to know there are Tawny Owls in the area before putting a box up. It is not difficult to get them breeding, especially if there are no natural cavities / holes in the trees.



Thanks Peter, I'll probably try placing a couple. There are Tawnys in the vicinity.


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Thanx Peter

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Neil Ferguson wrote:

What are the specifications of the Owl boxes and how high do you site them?





When I first started putting Tawny Owl boxes up I made them 20" deep, 12" square with a 6" square or diameter entrance hole. After several years they began to rot as they were made out of plywood. I now use plastic barrels, which have proven excellent. I just cut out a 6" diameter entrance hole in the front, bolt straps to the sides of the barrel and nail them to a tree with galvanised nails, as they won't rust and hopefully won't damage the tree. At first I thought these would last a lifetime, but as the tree grows it deforms the barrels to such an extent that some need replacing after a number of years.

I have two different sizes of barrels. The larger ones are 27" deep. The smaller are 20" deep. They have both proven excellent. With it being plastic they don't get soaked through in heavy rain, but on the downside they can get very warm inside on a hot day.

A pair of Kestrels have used one of the smaller barrels for a good number of years producing 50 young so far and they also have young this year but I don't know how many at present.

Regarding the height of the boxes I have some around 10 ft high and in some places where members of the public are passing I try and put them as high up the tree as possible.

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What are the specifications of the Owl boxes and how high do you site them?

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dave broome wrote:

Hello Peter, can I ask, what percentage of boxes put up are generally taken up by Tawny Owls? Also, do many become occupied by Grey Squirrels? If I was to place a single box on a tree is there any general advice regarding it's position etc? Would there be any preference between trees given the choice of a Beech or Sycamore? Cheers, Dave

-- Edited by dave broome on Friday 30th of May 2014 09:59:25 PM





Grey squirrels are an absolute nightmare and cause a lot of problems. In the winter of 2012 / 2013 we only had 9 pairs of Tawny Owls from around 70 boxes with nearly 50 taken up by squirrels dreys. With it being such a bad winter the squirrels took up residence early, thus not allowing Tawny Owls into the boxes.

I generally have 2 boxes per site. The thinking behind it is if squirrels get in one box the Tawnys might go in the other. At least it might give me a better chance.

The mild conditions over the last winter seemed to help us as we didn't have too many dreys, allowing the Tawny Owls to take up residence. I don't have the exact figures to hand as to how many of the boxes were occupied by squirrels.

Like any other type of nest box it really should be sighted in an easterly direction or in a sheltered position. There is no preference whatsoever in trees. I normally like to know there are Tawny Owls in the area before putting a box up. It is not difficult to get them breeding, especially if there are no natural cavities / holes in the trees.

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Hello Peter, can I ask, what percentage of boxes put up are generally taken up by Tawny Owls? Also, do many become occupied by Grey Squirrels? If I was to place a single box on a tree is there any general advice regarding it's position etc? Would there be any preference between trees given the choice of a Beech or Sycamore? Cheers, Dave

-- Edited by dave broome on Friday 30th of May 2014 09:59:25 PM

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Thanks for your comments Pete.

Today I had three more similar experiences to add to my two along Bradshaw Brook, all involving Blackbirds having a go at Owls out and about during the day. Two areas around Wayoh and one at Turton Tower. Again I am pretty confident that they had young nearby, and the number of sightings over a few days is above my similar sightings locally over a full breeding season in previous years.


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Lots of hard work there Pete.. Good effort..

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Ian Campbell wrote:

Peter Johnson wrote:

After a bad breeding season last year with only 9 pairs producing 11 young we are back on track this year with an excellent total of 24 pairs with 51 young, the highest total of young since we started.




Excellent news Peter, is this just in the Bury area ?
Cheers Ian



Yes, they are all in the Bury area.

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Fantastic news. Hard work monitoring all those different boxes. Makes it all worth while

smile

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Peter Johnson wrote:

After a bad breeding season last year with only 9 pairs producing 11 young we are back on track this year with an excellent total of 24 pairs with 51 young, the highest total of young since we started.




Excellent news Peter, is this just in the Bury area ?
Cheers Ian

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After a bad breeding season last year with only 9 pairs producing 11 young we are back on track this year with an excellent total of 24 pairs with 51 young, the highest total of young since we started.

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