[Ontbirds]Great Gray Owls Again This Year??

Bob Bowles rbowles at rogers.com
Sat Nov 5 20:29:54 EST 2005

Last year I tracked over 400 Great Gray Owls in Simcoe County and recorded 85 that were killed by collisions with vehicles. The first one was reported on October 27, 2004 at Midhurst and the last one was June 19, 2005 north of Midland at Tay Point Road. I would have expected the Meadow Vole population to have rebounded in the north so no Great Gray Owls in the south this year.
Then on October 22nd I received a report from someone who reported them last year that he had observed one at Tay Point Road at the location of the last sighting last summer. Then another report on October 30th and a third report on October 31st, all from different observers who had observed and reported them last year at two different locations. All three of these locations were areas where owls were seen last winter. Today, November 5th two more reports from new observers who saw them last year at locations where they were observed last winter. I now have 5 different reports of Great Gray Owls from five different observers all in locations where Great Gray Owls were seen last winter. Last year I did not receive the 2nd Great Gray Owl report until December 9, 2004 but now have 5 reports already this year. 
For the sake of the owls I hope we do not get another big Great Gray Owl year in the south since the impact was so great last year but it appears to be shaping up to another GGOW eruption but still too early to tell. 

Bob Bowles
Orillia, Ontario

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