Yours is an interesting question.
From my experience, owls are rather unpredictable. Sometimes they respond
vocally right away - say within minutes. Sometimes they respond silently -
as in popping up from a roost hole or flying in (silently) right away. If
that's the case, they can easily go unnoticed.
Other times they will remain silent and motionless for a longer period of
time - say hours. I've been camping, when I've given an owl hoot, just for
the hoot of it. Nothing. Then hours later, there's be a chorus of owls. They
were there all right. Just laying low for whatever reason.
Bottom line: You never know until you know for sure.
The (not now) Greene County,
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From: Vermont Birds [mailto:[log in to unmask]]On Behalf Of - Maeve Kim
Sent: Tuesday, January 18, 2005 8:13 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [VTBIRD] help needed with VBBA owls
Hi, all - I can't believe there aren't owls in my VBBA block, which has a
nicely diverse mixture of small town, developed rural areas, woods,
fields and meadows - but several trips at various times of year with the
tape have yielded nothing in the way of response. I've gone out at night in
March and April and once in December. (The December trip wasn't in the prime
owl-hooting time, but I decided to give it a try.) I've followed the VBBA
but I'm wondering if the owls need more time between humans walking around
and the beginning of the taped noises. Do successful owl prowlers hide in
blinds? crouch in the undergrowth? Are the owls more likely to respond at
end of the night rather than at the darkest times, or vice versa?
I did get a surprising and exciting screech owl response right from a tree
my own back yard, by the way, when I was testing the tape levels before
leaving for one of my trips!
Thanks in advance for any advice - Maeve Kim, Jericho Center