SNOWY OWL BUBO HAS A BOOBOO -By Kim Smith

Although Bubo appears to have an injury surrounding his left eye, it did not seem to affect his ability to see. I sent a photo yesterday to Erinn Whitmore and both she and Jodi Swenson confirmed that he’s probably okay at this point.

This afternoon he flew into Hedwig’s territoy, which had been hers all day, and after an aerial battle took place, he claimed her rock. I don’t know if it’s the light but Bubo’s eye does not look any better today. The crows and seagulls are vicious and unrelenting towards the Snowies, other raptors don’t want them in their territory, and they are battling each other–it’s easy to understand how an eye could become injured. Posting photos tomorrow of the Snowy battle.

Comparing right eye versus left eye.

7 thoughts on “SNOWY OWL BUBO HAS A BOOBOO -By Kim Smith

  1. Interesting that you have supposedly captured multiple altercations between the snowies. You would think since they are here for rest and to find food that they wouldn’t waste their time on that. Unless however they are so stressed from your constant location updates and gawking that every time they try to fly away from you they have to waste their precious energy getting into it with the other stressed snowy owl. You posted some bird behavior tips the other day, but is is evident you are not following them. You also clearly don’t realize that one of the rule of photographing these owls and even other wildlife is if they are starting directly into your camera YOU ARE TOO CLOSE. Time for you to find a new hobby that may actually help wildlife instead of hurt it.

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  2. Hello Molly J. Kelleher,

    The female Snowy Owl Hedwig has been at Bass Rocks since Christmastime. She appears to have a tremendous tolerance for human activity. Long before I posted publicly on GMG, she was often visited by half a dozen new batches of people, practically every hour. She arrives on the rocks early in the morning and leaves late in the afternoon, often sitting mere feet from the road. Young children, old folks, and a range in between are getting tremendous pleasure from seeing for the first time a Snowy Owl.

    Last year at Parker River there was a Barred Owl who for several days perched approximately only abput ten feet from the path. Daily dozens of people came to look, and despite all the activity, the owl continued day after day to rest in the same spot. Unfortunately, someone has been posting on the Parker River website and on eBird alerts about our Snowies. Parker River is equipped for the kinds of crowds this may bring, with clearly defined paths. We are not.

    When Snowies are at rest, they swivel their heads constantly. Most of the time their eyes are closed, or half closed. Towards the end of the the day they begin to open their eyes fully while they are getting ready to take off to hunt. Although resting, they need to be diligently on the look out for other raptors, gulls, and crows. Well-behaved people appear to be the least of Hedwig’s and Bubo’s worries.

    The purpose of the guidelines is to help people understand. Today for instance, a photographer announced that he was going to go down on the rocks to scare the Snowy to make her fly. We all politely explained to him why that would be a very bad idea, thankfully he didn’t, and Hedwig rested for another hour before Bubo suddenly swept in and caused a ruckus.

    Why don’t you come on down and have a look 🙂

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  3. Beautiful owl always observant – so many native tribes names after, and the legends as a result of observation and the power they all have! And have taken names of through observation of the strengths and adaptations to surroundings once again observed. I watched a crow take our dogs hard food out of a bowl two big to swallow, so hopped over to the water bowl dunked dropped it in water soften to eat and we (Mom and I watched this). We were looking out moms window no more than five feet away. Rest in peace Mom thank you for this lesson of observation you noticed while writing me letters while I was serving overseas!

    It does appear there may have been another bird strike fight by feather above eye-talon peck??. Or another form of injury to eye sometimes that come from within the bird itself …Environmental conditions also. Thanks for the view with you camera lens art of nature! 🙂 Dave & Kim 🙂

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