Thursday, 3 January 2019

Owl pellets!

I went back to where I spotted the BARRED OWL (<=all my sightings), looking for owl pellets. Here it was Jan. 1st.
Owl digestion is interesting.
The first part is the stomach  (proventriculus), which produces enzymes, acids, and mucus that begin the process of digestion. 
The second part is the muscular stomach, called the ventriculus, or gizzard. It serves as a filter, holding back insolubles: bones, fur, teeth and feathers (more about this here).
I could vaguely recall the tree. I'm glad I did, as we had 7 cm snow overnight. They would be totally buried today.

Sure enough: three frozen pellets. One was frozen onto a stick where she'd regurgitated it out. 

I thawed them out, and took them apart with my large tweezers. FIVE little skulls! Owl has been busy. I should have let them dry, as they had a slight smell and I grossed out my grandies!

I visited the spot again today (Jan. 3), no sign of owl, but lots of snow!


William Kendall said...

Quite a difference a few days makes.

Nancy J said...

Wow, what a find, and then came the snow. Love the owl sitting and watching so wisely.

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
Neat work! and bbrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. It has turned decided cooler with the new year this side too. YAM xx

Sue (this n that) said...

Wow Jenn, that's amazing.
I also love how you "grossed our your grandies" lol!
Happy New Year to you xx

Anvilcloud said...

I might not snack tonight after seeing this. :)

Powell River Books said...

How interesting. When I taught the upper grade teachers used to order owl pellets to investigate. But you have your own natural source. - Margy

Christine said...

the skating looks such fun! always so educational stopping by here, I had no idea what an owl pellet was!