Today's Avian Beauty podcast will be a departure. Instead of talking about a specific bird, I'll be sharing some basic tips on how to enjoy birdwatching, or birding as those of us in the trenches call it.
Avian Beauty Podcast #19
Last week we talked about the most popular birds in the United States - this week, let's go the other direction. What are some of the least popular birds in the USA?
Avian Beauty Podcast # 17
What's the most popular bird in the United States? Well if you guessed Bald Eagle - you'd be right. But what about the second most popular bird? Believe it or not it is the Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus).
Whether it's music, the written word or our national symbol, the eagle is a much beloved figure in popular culture.
Based on response I get to this podcast and to my bird photography, it's safe to say that people love raptors and particularly owls. (One exception is on the African Continent where most people think they are evil - but that's another podcast.)
The great horned owl (Bubo virginianus) is a successful hunter. Early naturalists called these owls "winged tigers" because of their ferocity. While rare, a great horned owl can occasionally catch and kill even a peregrine falcon! When clenched, a Great Horned Owl’s strong talons require a force of 28 pounds to open. The owls use this deadly grip to sever the spine of large prey.
Imagine that you're a mourning dove - happily flying around when all of a sudden, you see a terrifying peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) flying straight at you.
Thankfully - birders only need one thing to be successful - they need birds. And finding birds is easy - if you know where to look.