Who? Owls, yes. In the ground, really?
Before moving to Arizona, I had never heard of an owl that burrowed into the ground to nest. And then even after hearing about them and hearing that their numbers were declining, I never expected to see any.
Low and behold, there is a local agency working to transplant and protect these cute little things. Zanjero Park, a barren spot of dirt next to the highway, is one of those re-location sites.
Not glamorous for us, but for these little owls, it is like being transplanted to a 4 diamond all inclusive resort. They are given a pre-built condo next to an “all you can eat diner” – a large field full of delectable mice and moles and ugly bugs.
Unlike their cousins, the burrowing owls are active during the day. Wanting to catch them during their breakfast hour, we did what we always do. You guessed it – we set the alarm for 4:45am. After a 40 minute drive to Gilbert, we arrived just prior to breakfast.
At first there was just one owl visible, but our patience paid off.
I even saw one come home with a take out order – A small bird.
And the next door neighbor’s kid wanted a snack.
After awhile, the owls were tiring. And, after being up for 3 hours, we were ready to join them for nap.
Remember, it’s all about the light and catching breakfast.
To learn more about the burrowing owls visit the Wild At Heart website.