Urban Wildlife – 2020

Urban wildlife is all around us. In May, this was proven beyond doubt. We witnessed our first ever bee swarm in our yard. Since our backyard deck was gradually falling apart, we started to take down its awnings. To our surprise we learned that it hosted a rich, thriving ecosystem. Initially we found thirty paperwasp nests. But when the awning came crashing down, we saw an owl fly away.

We did not realize a Western Screech Owl family had been living just a few feet away from the most popular room in the house. They had grown used to the squeaky screen door and people scaring the squirrels away. When the awning fell, Momma Screech flew away, and the babies gently slid down the awning to the deck–surprising us all!. We quickly built an ad hoc cardboard nest for the owls chicks and left the deck in hopes that Momma Screech would come back for them. She did, and Pappa came back as well.

The next step was making them a more permanent home, and we wanted our kitchen door back. With lots of help from local owl experts (and new friends) , the family was safely moved to its new location. A camera was set up to watch our new pets. They adapted very well to their surroundings.