This gray-phase Eastern Screech Owl began using our nest box in the spring of 2007. Although it was used it for nesting each year, when the young fledged, she left and the squirrels took over. By mid-winter the box was stuffed full of leaves and other nesting debris. Each spring she would return, evict the squirrel and reclaim her nest box. This past year was different. After the young fledged, she returned in the early summer and continued to use the box, at least most of the time, for roosting. This continued into December when I purchased the camera (Hawk Eye Nature Cam). Before installing it in the box, I mounted it on a ladder and took the following video:
Then, on the night of January 31, 2011, while she was out on her evening of foraging in my Certified Backyard Habitat (National Wildlife Federation), I slipped the camera into the box and recorded her return:
Convinced that this would be another successful nesting season, I set out to document and share the experience of spring in the life of a pair of Eastern Screech Owls.