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Short Eared Owlab Refuge

"It is the owl that shrieked, the fatal bellman Which gives the stern'st good-night."
Shakespeare, Lady Macbeth in Macbeth

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Short Earred Owl by Joe Kostoss

Short eared owl. Photography by Joe Kostoss

    Short eared Owl
Asio Flammeus
Order: Strigiformes
Family: Strigidae

Genus: Asio

Short-eared Owls are some of our most endearing owls, yet they are disappearing from much of their historic range in the eastern U.S.  They are listed as endangered in New York State and are now generally considered winter visitors, although they used to breed here.
 
            Small flocks leave their breeding grounds in northern Canada to gather on grassland and coastal wintering grounds across the northeast.  Almost every evening between sunset and dusk they will meet,  swooping over and under each other and greeting each other with sharp, yip-like cries before flying off to hunt.  Watching this display or having an owl swoop past you is a wonder you'll never forget!

<>            Short-eared Owls nest and roost on the ground, but you may find them perched on fence posts, hay bales or even in trees when snow blankets the ground.  Stare into the eyes of one of these pint-sized owls and you'll glimpse the mystery of the wild! 

            Less than 100 Short-eared Owls remain in New York State (annual average).  Habitats like the largely unprotected Washington county Grasslands Important Bird Area (IBA) provide the large, open spaces the owls need to fit their hunting style and large populations of the mice, voles and other small mammals that are their usual prey. 

            The Washington County Grasslands IBA is critical to the survival of Short-eared Owls in New York State.  It also provides important habitat to other threatened and at risk birds like Northern Harriers, Upland Sandpipers, Eastern Meadowlarks and American Kestrels.  Friends of the Washington County Grasslands IBA is working with other partners to conserve his unique IBA before it is lost to development and these amazing, mysterious owls disappear from New York State.  Learn more about Friends of the IBA's efforts to protect the owls and conserve this vital habitat while benefiting local communities and what you can do to help at:
 www.ibafriends.org and www.winterraptorfest.com. Laurie LaFond



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Short Earred Owl
Short eared owl. Photography by Deb MacKenzie
Short earred owl range map- Cornell

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"A serious writer is not to be confounded with a solemn writer. A serious writer may be a hawk
or a buzzard or even a popinjay, but a solemn writer is always a bloody owl."

Ernest Hemingway

Owl pages
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Contact Information
Adirondack Wildlife Refuge
Adirondack Wildlife Refuge & Rehabilitation Center

Steve & Wendy Hall
PO Box 555, 977 Springfield Road, Wilmington, NY 12997
Toll Free: 855-Wolf-Man (855-965-3626)
Cell Phones: 914-715-7620 or 914-772-5983
Office Phone: 518-946-2428
Fax: 518-536-9015
Email us: info@AdirondackWildlife.org