Spring Babies and Parenting Styles

I’ve been following this Great Horned Owl family for a few months now. At first I only spotted Papa, later I found Mama nesting nearby, now the two Owlets had come out too. Here’s my recent visit, the first Owlet I saw:

Owlet 1

Here’s the second one. Took me some time to spot:

Owlet 2

I didn’t have the chance to take a family photo, since each of them was on different branches, two adults and two young ones, but never far from each other though. Here you can see one parent (not sure if it’s Mom or Dad) keeping an eye on the owlet from a distance. Can you spot them both?

Parent Owl and Owlet

I love this… staying together, but also giving each other room.


Here’s a family photo I did manage to take, albeit from afar. Two Canada Geese with their Goslings close by:

Canada Geese with Goslings

Ah… the different parenting styles.


Saturday Snapshot is hosted on a new site now: Melinda of West Metro Mommy. CLICK HERE to see what others have posted.


Related Posts on the Great Horned Owl Family:

Saturday Snapshot March 9: The Great Horned Owl

Sign of Spring: Nesting


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If she’s not birding by the Pond, Arti’s likely watching a movie, reading, or writing a review. Creator of Ripple Effects, bylines in Asian American Press, Vague Visages, Curator Magazine.

51 thoughts on “Spring Babies and Parenting Styles”

  1. Your owlets are looking about the same size as the family I’ve been watching. Such cute little guys (or gals).

    The different parenting styles are fascinating to observe. The owl family will spend the entire summer together while songbirds will raise 2 to 3 broods.


    1. Leslie,

      The owl family is quite a sight to behold, if one can spot them in the trees, now full of leaves. I can understand why winter or fall birding can be ‘easier’. I’ve yet to find songbird babies. So hopefully soon.


  2. I saw cygnets on the canal today – five of them, with the parents. Absolutely beautiful. The adults were splashing about and diving into the water, and sending up showers of sparkling water droplets. It looked as if they were playing, but I assume it must have had a purpose. My Snapshot is at http://goo.gl/hfGhV


    1. Christine,

      I know we have swans here, but up till now, I haven’t seen any myself. Hope one day I’ll have the chance to see them in person, up close, adults and/or young ones. Good that you had that experience. Did you take any photos of them? Sounds like a lively picture.


    1. Ali,

      As a matter of fact, those trees are birders hangout now… so it’s not too hard to spot the owls cause there’s usually someone there pointing out to you. 😉


  3. I just saw my first clutch of baby mallards with their mama yesterday. It’s amazing how similar they look to the geese when they’re young. There’s about a 50% mortality rate among the mallards, I’d think. There are a lot of predators around. Still, the often hatch as many as ten or twelve or more, so it seems nature has things under control. If some weren’t lost, we’d be up to our hips in ducks!

    The owls are my favorite, though. The camouflage is amazing (and yes, I did have to look up the spelling of that one!) Like Ali, I could find them in the photos, but I’m not sure I would have in the wild.

    I rarely see baby songbirds until they’re fully fledged and following their parents around. I have a couple of sparrows I just recognized as fledglings (all that wing flapping and shrieking: Feed Me! Feed Me!). The bluejays still are carrying food back to the nest – soon their young ones will be out and about. And I hear mockingbird babies all over the place. I can’t see them, but their call (and that of the cardinals) is unmistakeable.

    The nearby nature center is having an owl prowl on the night of June 22. I’m going to try and remember to call and make a reservation after the holiday. I want to see an owl!


    1. Linda,

      I’m still learning to ID babies of different species. That’s what makes spring birding so interesting and fun. And your ‘owl prowl night’ sounds most exciting. I wanted to see ‘my’ owl get to work too. I met this guy who staked out at night (around 9 pm) night after night watching father owl here hunting and then bring the prey back to feed his young. I wouldn’t want to go back there all by myself at night. But your community ‘owl prowl’ sounds like something I’ve been wanting to experience. But I’m afraid I wouldn’t be able to take photos then.


  4. How sweet are those goslings! I can’t quite tell if the owlets are much smaller than their parents. They’ve got that not-quite-a-chick but not-quite-grown-up look. Fun family portraits, Arti!


    1. nikkipolani,

      I was surprised to find them quite big in size, considering they’re probably a couple of months old. But they were puffed up too, with all what looked to be ultra soft down. It’s an itch almost not being able to touch them. 😉


  5. The baby owls are gorgeous, so flufffy and downy. I rarely see adult owls, and have never seen owlets. I always like a Canada Goose picture.


    1. Louise,

      This is my first sighting of owlets too. I don’t know how long they’ll be here, but I know the spot, and other birders too. There are usually some birders below those tall trees, sometimes with tripod set up too.


  6. Love the owl shots in particular … they are so tricky to spot. We watched the comings and going of a Fairy Wren family in our backyard earlier this year. I took a couple of shots of the male hovering around but they are tiny and fast so the photos aren’t great. They were nesting in our prickly grevillea bush. We’ve seen them in our front yard before but never nesting – and certainly never nesting in the back. We worked out why. Last September our dear little dog whom we acquired a few months after moving into this house died. I guess it’s true about silver linings!

    You might be interested in a novella I just reviewed … running through it are one of the main character’s observations of a kookaburra family. The info is real – the author is an agricultural journalist AND had a kookaburra family in her own backyard. It’s Carrie Tiffany’s Mateship with birds and it’s already won two significant literary awards this year.


    1. I have a friend who loves both birds and cats… she has several of each kind in her house. She manages to keep them living at peace, but not in the backyard. Usually it’s the cat that wins the nature battle out there. Thanks for the link to your review. The novella sure sounds interesting… of birds and men?


      1. It is interesting … and one of those you think about lots.

        (Gatsby just opening here now …preview screenings with opening on Thurs I think … hoping to get to it in the next week or so)


    1. lameadventures,

      Good question. I need to find that out too. ‘Owlet’ is a new word I learned not too long ago, so’s ‘cygnets’, just came across it in a comment above. You can learn so much just from the comments. Thanks for your question… now I need to do some research. 😉


  7. Owls are not commonly spotted in Australia, so it was wonderful to see your pictures. Even the owlets faces look full of wisdom and serenity.


  8. Oh, those owlets are so dear. SO dear. But so, too, is the goose family. I remember when you first introduced those owls — how wonderful to see their babies!

    Have a wonderful weekend. Sending hugs!


    1. Jeanie,

      It’s such a pleasure watching them over these months. Just like I’ve made a new friend whom I can visit whenever I want… albeit that’s not what the Owl family thinks.
      A very happy Memorial Weekend to you!


    1. Stefanie,

      I went back and visited the owlets. Again, so very cute. And I have seen more duck babies too, just today… Eager to share them with you.


  9. BABIES!!!!

    I live for Autumn and Winter, but one of Spring’s saving graces are the birds. Mourning doves making their homes at my parent’s house and Boyfriend’s garage, mockingbirds ready to buzz anyone getting too close to their families, sparrows making their nests…everywhere. The hum and chirp of nesting birds – love them.

    Your photos make me wish I was there, watching the suddenly gentle raptors or the geese with their golden goslings.


    1. Aubrey,

      Guess we have very different species of birds in our neck of the woods. That’s just so interesting, exchanging info’s. I don’t ‘live for’ Winter here… but Autumn is most beautiful, even more than Spring. I went back out there today and saw the Owlets again, and some Goslings, and duck babies… I’ll keep you posted. Thanks for stopping by and leaving your comment.


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