This is Olly. He was found on the roadside a few years ago now when I was driving the girls to the bus stop and Ross to catch his train to college. On my way back, I saw a tawny owl had been hit by traffic and was dead at the side of the road. It had only just died, so I picked up the sad but fabulous creature and brought him home. Straight away I phoned an acquaintance of ours who is a taxidermist and following his instructions, Olly was promptly wrapped in bin bags and put in the freezer on Fast Freeze, then a couple of days later he was sent via Royal Next Day Delivery (well insulated!) up to Yorkshire: that made for an interesting conversation with the Post Office clerk I can tell you! Several weeks later Olly came back to us.
As we have all realised, winter has waned and we are riding full pelt toward summer. If we should need a little convincing of this, then get up really early, go someplace that nature takes up more space than humankind, stand very still and just listen. Our Trail Cams often catch the dawn chorus and even though they are all really lovely to listen to, every now and then one stands out of the crowd. This following clip is one of those. To me it is the most beautiful sound in the world. This clip even has the owl calls at dawn! And there are so many birds singing at the same time, too.
But the day time doesn’t always have everything, so here is a special sound nearly only ever heard at night. These calls are by tawny owls: two adults and their young, talking away to each other. They were recorded during a video clip of a hedgehog at one of our feeding stations.
These owl may be easy to hear when walking in the woods at night and easy to record their calls on the Trail Cams but rarely do I actually see them in the woods. A few days ago, my neighbour and friend showed me where our local barn owl roosts in the day. All I could see of him/her was the tail feathers, as they were that well hidden amongst the leaves and branches of a hawthorn tree but it was a special thrill all the same.