Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Western Screech-Owl that I found dead

I found this dead Western Screech-Owl several days ago next to a very busy street on the edge of my town where traffic drives 50 or so in a 40 zone. I am sure it had tried to fly across the road and been hit by a vehicle--no blood, head twisted and signs of neurological trauma. It was near the Arkansas River which is habitat to Western Screech-Owls in this area. The middle pic is an enlargement of the top pic.
The bottom pic shows the amazing little feet on these tiny owls--they have good sized claws for the size of their feet and body. I find the bottom pads of it's feet interesting-not sure the purpose of those little papillae,. Poor owls, this species and others tend to fly low to the ground and are at risk from being hit by vehicles. This one had been hit not long before I found it as it's body was supple and still warm. Darn. SeEtta