While out for a drive…
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Great Horned Owl & Swainson’s Hawks

great horned owl photo

"I'm not going anywhere!"

I was attending to some weeding in the vegetable garden when I heard the piercing cries of a pair of Swainson’s Hawks that had been nesting in a nearby pine tree. When I turned to look I saw a hawk with wings folded diving in a speedy vertical descent. Then  seconds later there was an explosion of feathers and pine needles! At that point I saw a Great Horned Owl making a miraculous escape out of the pine and taking refuge in a small Oak tree. The Swainson was in hot pursuit, but the owl was well protected in the heavy cover of the scrubby oak.

As I moved into position with my camera I noticed that there was not one one but three owls in the oak. They were young,smallish, and somewhat intimidated. I got a picture of this one, staring over his shoulder at me, with absolutely no intention of moving. With the owls out of the pine ( where the hawk nest was) the Swainsons eventually lost interest and went about other business.

2 Responses to Great Horned Owl & Swainson’s Hawks

  • Jan says:

    So cool. Are the owls in town? We have two babies still in the nest out here. They are just starting to get some colored feathers.

    • John Monroe says:

      Jan,
      These were out by Cache Creek near Yolo. There have been previous altercations between the Great Horned Owls and the Swainson’s Hawk.

      Thanks for the comment,

      John

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