SNN (ScrollingNetworkNews) ✿ ✿ Our Mel and Sydney returned to their nesting box with plenty of bonding occurring..but after 2.5 months of Sydney in the box from Dec 2013 to mid Feb 2014, the lack of prey gifts from Mel ( perhaps due to the severe and historic drought underway in California)and they have forgone the nesting process this year as many other raptors ✿ Compared to other owls of similar size, the Barn Owl has a much higher metabolic rate, requiring relatively more food. Pound for pound, Barn Owls consume more rodents – often regarded as pests by humans – than possibly any other creature. ✿ We remind viewers that sometimes owlets may not survive - the parents will dispose of things in "The Owl Way" -viewer discretion is advised, this is nature and the "Owl way". ✿ ~ ✿ “Animals, like us, are living souls. They are not things. They are not objects. Neither are they human. Yet they mourn. They love. They dance. They suffer. They know the peaks and chasms of being.” ― Gary Kowalski, The Souls of Animals ✿ Each species is a masterpiece, a creation assembled with extreme care and genius." ~ E.O. Wilson

Thursday, August 23, 2012


This mourning dove, with her nest of two eggs, is about to get power-washed.

Actually, these kinds of threats to wild birds are not uncommon, especially in spring and summer months - the time when people typically trim trees, clear brush, and fix up their homes, coinciding, however, with the peak nesting season for many migratory birds.

Often, what people don't realize is that disturbing a wild bird or its nest can result in substantial fines.

Wild birds, their nests and eggs, are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA), administrated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. The pertinent section (16 USC § 703) of this federal law reads: shall be unlawful at any time, by any means or in any manner, to pursue, hunt, take, capture, kill, attempt to take, capture, or kill, possess, offer for sale, sell, offer to barter, barter, offer to purchase, purchase, deliver for shipment, ship, export, import, cause to be shipped, exported, or imported, deliver for transportation, transport or cause to be transported, carry or cause to be carried, or receive for shipment, transportation, carriage, or export, any migratory bird, any part, nest, or egg of any such bird,...
The law doesn't make tree trimming or power-washing a home illegal, but if, in the process, a migratory bird is injured or an active nest is disturbed or damaged, the responsible party can be held accountable. Fines vary, but can be as high as $1,000.00 per incident with an additional $100.00 per bird or item (nest). Occasionally, wildlife rescuers are called upon to save an active bird's nest, like the one pictured above. A word of caution - even a licensed wildlife professional, with federal permits allowing them to rescue and transport protected birds, would be in violation of the law if they disturbed an active nest. Ideally, they should wait until after the violation has been committed before they intervene to perform a rescue.

As for the mourning dove and her nest, lets hope the property management postpones power-washing and painting of the townhouses, at least until October, giving this dove time to raise her young.
<---Outside a window of a townhouse slated for fumigation.

A huge Thank You! to the homeowner who was concerned enough to call the right people
 Urge people to report potential, impending violations of the MBTA to the US Fish and Wildlife Service (see numbers below). If witnessing a violation in progress, thorough documentation and collection of evidence can be helpful in prosecuting such a crime.
US Fish and Wildlife Law Enforcement Offices in California:
Torrance, CA 310-328-1516
Burlingame, CA 650-876-9078
Sacramento, CA 916-414-6660