by Seth Davis
“We saw every owl…” is what we wanted to say after our long early-morning outing. Unfortunately, it turns out that these elusive raptors are in fact, very elusive. We were a trio for this trip (not unexpected for our early morning adventures) and we traveled all over Cape Elizabeth and Scarborough to some known owling hotspots. Our hope was that we would at the very least hear some owls as February is the beginning of their breeding season, but no such luck. Some in the party were pretty convinced they heard a Great Horned Owl near Ram Island, however it was considered a “Dirty Bird” (a term meaning that only some of a birding party saw/ID’d a bird and not everyone) thus we didn’t count it.
All was not lost however! We did see some great birds as it started to get light out. Most notably we saw 3 Red-tailed Hawks and 1 Rough-legged Hawk near the Spurwink River Crossing. There were also hundreds of Mallards, American Black Ducks, and Canada Geese among others.
The lack of sleep did not alter our determination, we will continue to seek out these amazing birds! Our next trip will be in late March so keep your eyes open for the announcement!