Saturday, January 19, 2008

Newest program bird at RAPTOR....Introducing Priscilla to the carrier


I have posted her picture before, but I can now use Priscilla for programs, providing she can handle getting into and out of the carrier (the box I use to transport the education birds...like a car seat for raptors). So you can guess what I spent my Saturday on.

But first, let's bask in the beauty that is a barred owl face:

That sun feel good on my feathers
It was bitterly cold today (about 15 degrees), a good day to have feathers. The sun must have felt very nice for her. And speaking of feathers, check out those eyelashes...er...eyefeathers.

Close up of eyelid feathers
Yep, those eyelids are covered with tiny, silky-soft feathers. (I haven't felt them on a live owl. I'm not a stupid woman...I have felt them on specimens.) Owls look soft because, well, they are. Look at the feathers of a falcon, cardinal, hawk, raven, etc. They are sleek, and in the case of falcons, stiff as hell (Lucy has given me many exfoliating, one-sided facials with her wing feathers). Owls need to be silent, and along with the fimbriae, or flutings, on the tips of their wing feathers,
they also grow fluffy, soft body feathers.
So the last thing a mouse or rat is going to think is "Why am I flying?"

Look at my pretty eyelashes...er...eyefeathers

If you didn't appreciate the beauty of owls before, I think you can look at this wonderful bird and say, "Now THAT'S a pretty bird." I get lost looking into her eyes. (Isn't that a Debbie Gibson song?)
Barred owls are called "The Old Men of the Forest". Can you think of a better way to describe them? Since they are our only large owl in these parts with dark eyes, they really do look human. Ever come across a roosting owl? They look at first like a little person sitting there, STARING at you.

Quickie video of putting Priscilla into a carrier for the first time...sorry my big butt is in the way, but I didn't trust Isabelle to hold the camera. The owl did awfully well, considering this was her first experience with a carrier:


video

Just a bit of scuffling, then she settled down.

And back out again:

Dern Blogger. It spent so much time "thinking" about uploading, I just gave up.

Same thing...she panicked just a little, but I talked to her (they really don't care what I am saying, just how I say it) and gently pushed up and in (on her belly) and she stepped up. I think it's safe to say that I love her. And that she will be a great program bird.

I feel a Barred Owl species profile comin' on.

Good grief, Blogger. Does it really take a freakin' hour to upload a video????

3 comments:

No_Clue said...

She is VERY beautiful...thank you so much for sharing her photos and video with us. Oh, and yes, you are right, Lost In Your Eyes is a Debbie Gibson song...it's so sad that I know that...lol

NatureWoman said...

Very cool bewd Susan! I'm looking forward to seeing and hearing more about her.

Mary said...

Priscilla is a suitable name for her - she's so pretty! I loved hearing Isabelle whisper, "does she like it?" So cute.

Let's hear and see more of her.