Ghosts at the Palace

The ghostly aeronauts are in full swing at the Palace of Fine Arts. Looks like the one nest we found in April (click here) has turned into three. I spent an hour and a half with the begging, clicking, chirping Barn Owls now residing in the rotunda.

Landing atop the columns. The owls are a bit more outgoing and less secretive than they were a few months ago.

I saw this couple, and a number of birds who were fully feathered but acting like juveniles and begging.

These owls are touching bills. I'm not sure why, but it seemed like the one on the left was begging and the other was just putting up with it.

This couple seemed more settled, but after a while it was hard to keep track of which owl was which. They travel silently and often wander along the ledges. I saw 9 different owls in 90 minutes.

This owl actually landed on a vertical face, clinging to the wall for 20 seconds before flying off.

This is a female who has several 4-5 week old chicks. Two of them have fallen from the nest and are now being cared for by WildCare. I happened to be involved in one of the rescues.(see the video below)

From what I can tell, this is a fully feathered chick, peering down from the nest.

They are venturing further out each day. They seem truly nocturnal, not becoming active until darkness really sets in.

Below is video of a 4-5 week old chick that fell 40 feet from the nest. It seemed in good health and will either be re-nested or slow released with other young owls at a rehab center. [vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/26906312 w=398&h=531]