A little short story of newfound friendships, helping a neighbor, and a love for nature.

Last winter I was at the end of a point on the Magothy River looking at tundra swans in hopes of locating a rare Trumpeter swan claimed to be in the flock. One of the neighbors saw me with my camera and kindly invited me over to where the swans were floating in front of his home.

One thing led to another and we quickly became friends. Bags of corn quickly found their way there to help feed the swans and a conversation began about an owl box. Seems they had an owl that had lived in a box installed high on one of their trees, but after a number of years she finally died and the box fell. Wanting to reinstall the box, a friend of mine and I helped set it up high in the tree.

And then the waiting and hoping began. Spring came with its blossoms, followed by the early summer rains. And then autumn came and the box remained empty. But then about two weeks ago, Gerta moved in. A beautiful red morph Screech owl, she spends most of the day buried deep in her box, only briefly showing up to warm up in the mid-afternoon sun.

It was my lucky day yesterday as one never knows if Gerta will appear or not. Visiting with my friends and the afternoon getting long, I was just about to leave and Gerta slipped her head out for a brief sun respite. Sleepily setting in her box, Gerta luxuriated.

Hello Gerta ! Welcome to the neighborhood and hope you stay for a long time.

31 replies »

  1. She is so cool! Glad you were able to get a new owl house on the market and have a new, great neighbor move in! You should have set it up with a remote camera! Next time maybe?

      • Yes, we’ve finally dumped our maintenance crews and have put the plows on the trucks. This is music to my ears. =-)
        I seem to be in many folks spam folders lately. I think it may be the funny icons I like to add to the comment. I’m going to bug WP soon, as I truly only know when someone I follow (have been following awhile) notices I’ve ‘stopped’ commenting.
        I love watching ‘bird cams’. It’s like a reality show w/o all the drama!!

  2. Great Capture and Story 🙂 BroCraves was in the Boy Scouts and they were always looking for projects. He built many a bird, owl, bat box during his High School years. Maybe this might be something to share with the local Boy Scouts troop to see if there might be a need for another owl box or two or maybe some bat boxes. I know a few Boy Scouts who have built benches and picnic tables too. Happy Week!

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