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Wintering ''eared'' owls,and prefered habitat? (1 Viewer)

matt green

Norfolkman gone walkabout
Was just thinking about my previous ''Eared Owl'' sightings over the last four years and started to consider which type of habitats are prefered by wintering short eared and long eared owls.

I think the majority of short eared owl sightings are associated with wetland
marshes/flood plains etc while the long eared owls much prefer the dryer
well drained grasslands of farmland/dry heath type habitats.Is this typical with other birders sightings?,and if so could it ever sway (but not confirm)
an identification in the field?

By chance I happened to see an owl tonight on my way from a local patch,as
it was quite dark I only managed to see a brief silhouette gliding over a minor river valley with marshes.I have two records for short eared owl here plus numerous barn owl sightings.No long eareds though!

Matt
 

Tri-Counties Birder

AKA The Portland Naturalist
I have, unfortunately, never seen a LEO, however, all my sightings of SEO have been on dry grassland, similar as you describe. Personally, I would think it very difficult to ID them from habitat alone.

Maybe someone with more experience of both species could come in at this point
 

Keith Reeder

Watch the birdie...
Doesn't work here, Matt - most of my SEOs have been seen over bog standard fallow farmland or similar uncultivated land, and my only LEO was seen in the same spot I'd gone looking for SEOs - dry grassland/heath.
 

matt green

Norfolkman gone walkabout
Mmmm..interesting to here from the non norfolk/eastern counties perspective.

Must be all those reports of short eared owls from welney/ouse washes/
norfolk broads etc that clouded my interpretation of ideal short eared owl wintering grounds!

Have any norfolk birders,or otherwise ever heard of any reports of long eared
owls being reported from stubb mill or other wetland raptor spots?

Matt
 

wolfbirder

Well-known member
Supporter
Very few SEO around this year it seems. Some cold years there seems to be loads of them. Generally though, i find barn owl and SEO sightings quite easy if you know where to go. LEO and especially tawny owl flight sightings are extremely difficult to obtain, and thats even when you know their habitat.
 
matt green said:
Mmmm..interesting to here from the non norfolk/eastern counties perspective.

Must be all those reports of short eared owls from welney/ouse washes/
norfolk broads etc that clouded my interpretation of ideal short eared owl wintering grounds!

Have any norfolk birders,or otherwise ever heard of any reports of long eared
owls being reported from stubb mill or other wetland raptor spots?

Matt

Hi, Matt. I think there have been Long-Eared Owls at some places locally which are pretty wet. Because Short-Eared Owls hunt by day they seem much easier to see so I guess that would make it more difficult to say whether there are LEOs about in the same habitat or not? As far as I know LEOs are tree-roosters but SEOs can roost on the ground so I guess this would also make a difference to where they are seen?

Helen
 
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dear friend,

in Italy I study and observe from many years the LEO' s.

The wintering habitats in Italy for the roost and the foraging extension some characteristics.
The roost they are situated on conifers but also on Sambucus nigra and in many cases also in privat garden of small house in suburban City area or in small town.
The homerange in winter not regular, beacause is LEO that live in degraded areas and with great antropic pression!

They to are the Owls with best demographic trend!

In winter I have studied that in urban area in all Italy, the LEO eat high percentages of birds.

The characteristics of the roost medium are:
- presence of trees
-calm area but also near to houses
- presence of agricultural fields or you space opened in the beam of 1 Km where hunt
- water presence (channels, rivers, lagos to times the sea) to times they are near hollow for extraction gravel!

Roost of the Asio otus larger is than approximately 70 - 80 LEO.


bye from Italy!
Marco Mastrorilli

I love Asio's owls!

my web sites is www.flammeus.it
 

Colin

Axeman (Retired)
England
There are LEOs most winters here in Gloucestershire and counties to the south. In ALL of my sightings when they have been perched up they appear in fairly dense tall hedgerows (very difficult to see) and ALLWAYS there is a watercourse on one side or the other of the hedge. By watercourse, I mean a substantial one which would need almost waders to cross. Not necessarily wide, just deep enough to put off wading generally. If the water is between the observer and the bird it is possible to approach quite close and the bird will not move but if the water is behind the bird, chances are that it will flush before you see it and the first you see is of it flying.

Marco, Welcome to BF - I see these are your second and third posts. Your English is fine (no need to apologise), better than some English people I know!!
 
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Macswede

Macswede
There's at least one site near Uppsala (north of Stockholm) where both Short-eared and Long-eared owls are seen regularly, except of course when I was there a week past on Saturday when neither were seen :-(.

There's a large meadow with a stream running by along one side of it.

Graham
 

matt green

Norfolkman gone walkabout
flammeusmarco said:
sorry for my not good english!

bye
Marco

Thank you for your input marco,your english is great!, and welcome to birdforum..

Great website!!

Matt
 
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matt green

Norfolkman gone walkabout
Helenelizabeth2 said:
Because Short-Eared Owls hunt by day they seem much easier to see so I guess that would make it more difficult to say whether there are LEOs about in the same habitat or not?
Helen

Interesting point about both owls being in the same habitat Helen.I vaguely recall reading somewhere that these two owls are quite tolerant of each others presence and it has even been known for them to roost together in certain areas? I've also seen a barn owl and short eared owl perched very close to one another with no apparent ''unease''

This would definately not be the case with long eared owls and tawnys.I think this might have something to do with prefered hunting periods,the long eared owl being more crepuscular than the diurnal short eared owl and thus less likely to cause conflict over hunting space/prey items?

Matt
 
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matt green

Norfolkman gone walkabout
matt green said:
Interesting point about both owls being in the same habitat Helen.I vaguely recall reading somewhere that these two owls are quite tolerant of each others presence and it has even been known for them to roost together in certain areas?
Matt

Despite looking,I've failed to find the original source for this record..

Will rummage some more!

Matt
 

Jaff

Registered Member
wolfbirder said:
Very few SEO around this year it seems. Some cold years there seems to be loads of them.

That'll probs be influxes of continental and Scandinavian birds coming over to escape and make the best of it here.
 
in Italy I have collected largest database than observations of SEO in the last century

and in fact I am writing a book will be published to May 2007.

In nearly 900 data of SEO observations in Italy (in every season)
I do not have no data of observations of SEO in roost of LEO.!!!!!!!

In other european roost of LEO you have given and observations of SEO presence?

I memory that Mikkola in our book wrote that to times the SEO wintering in the LEO's roost but in Italy this it is not recorded.

In Italy the SEO is very nomadic owl.

I task that the problem is legacy to the ecology of Asio flammeus.

In fact in the mediterranean area the SEO to nearly are always single individuals to the maximum in double owls
and this why coming down of latitude the SEO they are distributed on the large territory.

In Italy moreover the SEO they do not remain to along in a territory and turn very.

To the contrary the fidelity to the roost of the LEO has been recorded in many regions.

Some time SEO and LEO hunts the preys in the same habitats but of usual the permanence in winter in an area of the SEO is rare.

the LEO in winter, often lives close to city areas while in Italy best area of wintering of SEO to are: lagoon of Adriatic Sea laggon of Tuscany but in particular some agricultural areas many extending that in North of Italy to are very rare!

In France some "owl's specialist" have demonstrated that the alive SEO in areas where are abundant the Microtus arvalis (best prey of SEO in France and Spain).

In Italy instead we do not have unfortunately nobody that has studied the wintering diet of SEO and therefore is difficult to discover the relations between preys and habitats.

To the contrary many studies of winter diet of LEO exist.

A lot important for the Italy is new colonization of LEO in many regions of South Italy.

In fact until to approximately 30 years needle, the distribution of LEO was limited to North and centre of Italy.

Today the best winter roost 86 LEO in winter 2005-06 are found in Apulia with. This year in Italy to there to are temperatures many warmth (unusual) and is little LEO.

bye
Marco
 

imaxfli

Active member
Are the SE and LE owls of Europe the same as North America????...I watched 9 SE this evening hunting over snow covered brush/grass fields on edge of public wildlife area, 3 caught voles/mice..one was beseiged by 2 others as it flew up and dropped the rodent and it tumbled to ground from 20'. One flew 6' over the top of my parked truck.
 

IanF

Moderator
We have SEO and LEO sharing the same areas in winter as well.

The SEOs in winter move to the coast where they hunt over land right beside the dense hedges where the LEOs both winter and breed. The area is covered by both wetland marshes and drier grassland.

The LEOs roost and breed in mature dense Hawthorn close to wetland, whereas the SEOs roost in amongst the drier tufted grassland. Both species roost commumualy.

In summer the SEOs move inland to the higher ground to breed but the LEOs more or less stay put.
 

Tyke

Well-known member
Rye Harbour Nature Reserve has both SEO & LEO over winter.

The whole area is now vegetated shingle, covering what was once harbour/sea bay.
The SEO roost in the "younger" seaward shingle ridges.
The LEO roost low down in willow beside gravel pits located in the "older" shoreward shingle which has become grazed grassland with many ditches.

The LEO have two such roost sites which seem to be chosen according to the direction of the wind.They can be seen easily from a footpath and don't seem at all phased by constant viewing.

A plug for our excellent local wildlife web-site:-

http://rxwildlife.org.uk/category/all-latest-news/birds/page/2/

Colin
 

JohnnyH

Aldershot till I die!
The LEO have two such roost sites which seem to be chosen according to the direction of the wind.They can be seen easily from a footpath and don't seem at all phased by constant viewing.

Hi Colin,

I'm considering coming to Rye this weekend primarily for the LEO's, any tips on where to find them, best time of day etc?

Thanks,

John.
 
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