Friday, March 20, 2015

SATURDAY SURPRISE

Bill presenting me with a certificate of appreciation.
This past Saturday, Rob and I attended the 27th annual Ontario Eastern Bluebird Society  general meeting. We've been members for four years and really enjoy this yearly meeting. After our first meeting I volunteered myself to manage their Facebook page, and I handle their Twitter account as well.

The meetings are always educational and fun filled. I look forward to it every year and this year I received a pleasant surprise. Bill Read, the Founder and President, presented me with a certificate of appreciation during the meeting. I was stunned, there are many other members who do so much more, managing nest trails, etc, but the gesture was much appreciated.

I didn't take as many photos as I normally do because I was too busy talking and getting caught up with people I hadn't seen in a year!

All members received sew on patches of the logo this year with the Spring Newsletter.
Rob catching up with long time member Delores.
Tom gave a great video presentation on "his" Prothonotary Warblers.
Close up of my certificate.
Our donation to the Bucket Raffle.
Bill and Tom starting the draws
I wanna win these hand made lawn ornaments!!!
I did! I did! And Delores won one too!
Rob snuck off and saw an owl on his lunch break while I was at the board meeting.
It was another informative and enjoyable day. There was a great video presentation in the morning on Prothonotary Warblers and Eastern Bluebirds. The afternoon talk was presented by Audrey Heagy from Bird Studies Canada on Eastern Whip-poor-wills in Ontario. Looking forward to next year!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

SCREECH OWL SUNDAY

He's in good hands now!

This past Sunday, Rob and I transported two little Eastern Screech Owls to The Owl Foundation. It was only my second time doing this, the first being a Snowy Owl on our first wedding anniversary, November 30th, 2013.

This winter has been hard on the little owls, but thankfully, neither of these two had any serious injuries, and after being at the Toronto Wildlife Centre since the end of February they moved to The Owl Foundation to continue their recovery. They will eventually be released back to the areas from which they came. 

This was Rob's 5th owl run, and he had been invited in to see an examination before, but because I hadn't, Stacy asked us to come in. I wasn't expecting this, as I know how busy they can be at times. It was interesting to watch and I was very thankful for the experience. During the second exam I even got to rub one of their bellies!! Well, I was actually feeling his keel, how they determine fat percentage. He was a good weight, at 186 grams. During most of the examinations I just stood in the corner and giggled like an idiot.

We were also lucky enough to have a small visit with Kay (The founder of the foundation) while she enjoyed her lunch, surrounded by five adoring cats and her main squeeze, Big Bird.

Big Bird enjoying the sun through a window.

After we left the house we walked over to have a look at one of their resident Great Horned Owls, "Big Red", she's a foster owl and was given her first owlet of the season a few days earlier. Rob had actually delivered the little guy a week prior, who unfortunately fell from his nest, and it was just to high up to get him back in. The good news is, because of The Owl Foundation, this little guy will be raised by a Great Horned Owl, who couldn't be let free due to her injury, but still has all her motherly skills, Big Red will raise him, and he'll be released back to the wild with all the knowledge he'll need.

Big Red sitting on her "baby".
This is the baby Great Horned Owl being weighed a week earlier. Big Red will raise him well.
 When we were leaving we got a glimpse of "our" snowy, who is still recovering from her injuries, but is doing well and hopefully will be released.
Our Snowy.
 I was filled with a joyful feeling when we were driving away, knowing that we had helped these owls in some small way. Rob signing up as a volunteer driver for the Toronto Wildlife Centre and the Owl Foundation has been very emotionally rewarding for us, and we're always happy to help when we can.

If you'd like to find out more about The Owl Foundation click here. Sponsorship makes a wonderful and unique gift for a loved one,or yourself! And it includes an invitation for 2 to their annual Fall Open House, where you will see some of their resident owls and learn more about this amazing place.

FOOT NOTE: After we left TWC on Sunday, I was reading the paperwork on the owls. One of them had a name I recognized, she would be releasing one of the owls. I sent her a message, telling her what was going on and she quickly got back to me. She sent me a message yesterday letting me know that The Owl Foundation had contacted her about picking up the owl and releasing it! You can check out her wonderful wildlife blog by clicking here

Friday, February 27, 2015

FEBRUARY FREEZE


Our owl rocks buried in the snow.
February hasn't been much fun in our home. Rob and I both took a turn with illness and with the seemingly never ending extreme cold, we've spent most of the month hibernating. I am looking forward to flipping the calendar page to March this Sunday.

I feel like I have been cold for weeks and am longing for any sign of Spring. I can't wait to see some green grass, some buds on the trees and feel the warmth of the sun. I know I will take special pleasure in the sight of the first Spring flowers this year, and the smell of the lilacs. I can't wait for it to be warm enough to enjoy sitting in the backyard once again and watch our Spring/Summer birds return for another season.

Just a few more weeks, Spring is coming, I know it is, and I can't wait!

It's been a long, cold, winter.
Even Meadow has had enough of winter!
Looking forward to days like these.