“The owl is about as big as the nest,” he said. “It doesn’t look like a particularly good choice for this particular bird.”
Poole and Larson said it’s unclear how many eggs are in the nest or how long it will be before they hatch. While the wintry weather the last couple days can provide a stressor for owls, Larson said raptors are built to endure the conditions.
“Great horned owls are pretty tough,” he said. “They get snowed on all the time. But these sort of conditions are going to be tough on any nesting species.”
Poole said the refuge is considering offering some limited guided access to the nesting site over the next several weeks. Information on any programs that are organized as well as updates regarding the status of the Bill Forward Blind closure will be posted on the refuge website at www.fws.gov/northeast/parkerriver/.
In the meantime, Poole said there are multiple opportunities for enthusiasts to view active great horned owl nests via a number of online “raptor nest cams.” He directed interested observers to www.ustream.tv/okcowlcam, www.livewildlifecams.com/Ms%20Harvey.html and www.ustream.tv/channel/WolfRiverCam-New-London.
And for more facts about great horned owls and their natural history, he suggested checking out http://extension.umd.edu/publications/pdfs/fs802.pdf and www.ncwildlife.org/Portals/0/Learning/documents/Profiles/greathornedowl.pdf.