Outdoors blog: Hey, what's going on out there?
By: Sam Cook, Duluth News Tribune
Peering out at a new world
A pair of young-of-the-year saw-whet owls peer out from a nesting cavity. Jim Erickson of Esko took the photo.
About 10 days ago, Jim Erickson sent along a photo of a saw-whet owl he photographed near his home in Esko. Today he sent another, this time of two saw-whet owl chicks peering out into their new world. Chicks are identified by their plain buff breasts. Adults have vertical barring on their breasts.
Saw-whet owls are cool little birds. They stand just about 8 inches tall and have a wingspan of 17 inches. They weigh just 2.8 ounces, according to the "Sibley Field Guide to Birds of Eastern North America."
Have you ever heard one call? They sound like someone sharpening a saw, a series of "low whistled toots...toit, toit, toit," according to the birding guide. I can tell you from personal experience that if one is calling from a tree right behind your tent, you may have trouble getting to sleep.