and Penelope have returned to the area of the nest box after a six week
absence and can be heard
wheezing for food throughout the night. Ward and June, however, appear to
be cutting back on the food deliveries and usually ignore the wheezing so that
the young owls are forced to develop their own hunting
skills. One of them is getting the message and gives up on the wheezing after a couple of hours, while the
other one (pictured here) continues
wheezing until dawn and is forced to hunt in daylight. Swarms of birds can
be heard harassing it throughout the day as it attempts to hunt. The
adults should continue to cut
back on the food over the next few weeks so that both owlets will learn that
they are better off hunting than wheezing .
This wheezing call was recorded at 1 am on July 30th and illustrates the slow development of the owlets voices. The primary change over the last two months has been the addition of lower frequency components which give the wheeze a slightly mellower sound. They should start practicing their adult calls in the next thirty to sixty days as they prepare to leave their parent's territory.
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