A Great Horned Owlet – A Ways to Go – Our Final Visit

great horned owl and owlet, markham, ontario

The Great Horned Owlet that Bob and I had been observing in Markham, Ontario, Canada, during the month of May 2021 was nearing 6 weeks of age.  We weren’t certain if it would still be in the woodlot where it hatched but figured it was worth a look.

green space in markham, ontario

On June 5th, we made our way to the known location and were on site before 9 a.m.  It was a hot humid morning, and conditions were ripe for finding some interesting insects.

ebony jewelwing damselfly, markham, ontario

We began our meander in a broad patch of Canada Anemone where Bob found and photographed this Ebony Jewelwing Damselfly.

jean in a green space, markham, ontario

I had been held up when a flash of orange fluttered by and disappeared into the dense tangle of leaves.  Thinking it was a butterfly, I was pleasantly surprised to find a new-to-us moth.

crocus geometer moth, markham, ontario

Although a definitive id was not possible, the creature was either a False Crocus Geometer Moth or a Crocus Geometer Moth.

a great horned owl and owlet, markham, ontario

When finally we began in earnest to look for the Great Horned Owls, we were pleased to see that mother and baby Great Horned Owlet were once again together and perched high in the same Silver Maple Tree where last we had seen them.

a great horned owl and owlet, markham, ontario

Both the adult and owlet took notice of us, but their lofty perch meant that they had no concerns about our presence.

a great horned owl and owlet, markham, ontario

Through the binoculars and viewfinders, it was possible to note that the owlet’s feathers were developing nicely.  Both the primaries and tail feathers were showing the distinctive patterns of an adult Great Horned Owl.

a great horned owl and owlet, markham, ontario

It would be another 3 or 4 weeks before the Great Horned Owlet would be able to fly.  Even at that, the parents would continue to feed the owlet for several months.

a great horned owl and owlet, markham, ontario

Mother Great Horned Owl was totally relaxed unlike the last time we visited when they were assailed by a pair of Red-tailed Hawks.

a great horned owl and owlet, markham, ontario

After 15 minutes, we left the owls to themselves.  A few days later, we tried one last time to check on the Great Horned Owl family without success.  Checking in with the other 3 observers who had been in the know revealed the same results.  We were all happy to have had the opportunity for such observations.


Great Horned Owlet Newly Hatched

Great Horned Owl in Whitby’s Thickson’s Woods

Eastern Screech Owl (Red Morph) in Burlington

Northern Hawk Owl Winters In Southern Ontario

Frame To Frame – Bob and Jean


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