"There's An Owl In The Fireplace"

 
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:09 AM   #1
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"There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


The first time I heard that sentence, a couple years ago, it was spoken by my wife, to me, over the phone in a whispered voice.

My first thought upon hearing it was that this has got to be some sort of coded message, maybe it means I'll get some tonight, no it MUST mean I'll get some tonight.

So I quickly replied, "I'll bring the bread to put in the basket." [ya know what I'm sayin']

Well much to my dismay it really was an owl in the fire place. An Eastern Screech Owl. I got him out, with no harm to both of us, with a blanket, a Carhardt jacket and gloves. But he was pretty docile the whole time and only stared at me as I prepared to catch him. (her?, it?)

Well evidently he spread the word of room and board in my chimney, because low and behold, there's an owl in my fireplace again.

Only thing is this little bugger is feisty, and won't stay still. As soon as I approach the fireplace it goes back up my chimney.

Since this seems like it'll be something I get to practice regularly, till I make a chimney cap anyway, are there any tips or tricks you'd be willing to share, to help remove these squatters?

I'm sure I could starve him out then scrape him off the smoke shelf, but here's the thing.

Me and the Eastern Screech Owl population of western NC have this kind of "thing" going on, where they get in trouble of some kind and I get to "save" them.

Only, I think at this point I may just be enabling them.

If this one makes it out alive it'll be S.O.R.O.* #4.

What's up with that? They're beginning to remind me of little flying meth heads.

* Screech Owl Rescue Operation.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:11 AM   #2
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


i had one in my truck grill once

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Old 12-29-2010, 08:15 AM   #3
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


I've driven over two, was able to straddle them and they didn't get a scratch.

Both just sat there. When I went back to check they flew off. Crazy.

Go outside any night around my place and you hear them everywhere.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:17 AM   #4
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


Seems to me that any experienced SORC operative would have a chimney brush in his armory. Of course, you'd likely need an infantry grunt or two for a coordinated black op.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:26 AM   #5
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


Well I've got an operative in training. (she's 4)

She was helping me try to figure something out yesterday. We were on our bellies with our flash lights looking up the chimney. She was havin' a blast but still doesn't understand the art of stealth and talking a mile a minute.

She says,"Dad maybe you need a big box and a stick and a mouse and some string..."

Later she comes up with this, "Daddy if we save ANOTHER owl from the fire place will we be SUPERHEROS ?"

She'll do fine.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:34 AM   #6
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


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I've driven over two, was able to straddle them and they didn't get a scratch.

Both just sat there. When I went back to check they flew off. Crazy.

Go outside any night around my place and you hear them everywhere.

i was drivin home just after dusk and just saw a streak of light,maybe a rabbit was running across the road

i didn't see him stuck there till the next day
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Old 12-29-2010, 09:31 AM   #7
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


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i was drivin home just after dusk and just saw a streak of light,maybe a rabbit was running across the road

i didn't see him stuck there till the next day
Bummer.

Was he mangled up real bad?

If I ever come across a recently dead one I'm going to see if I can get it mounted.
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Old 12-29-2010, 12:15 PM   #8
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


no he was intact
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Old 12-29-2010, 01:04 PM   #9
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


my wife has two bunnies so has as pets...she swears that they are just pets and she isnt emotional about them..the one jumped the other day and broke a nail and had blood everywhere...amazing how the wife went nuts worried he was really bad...he cleaned up and hes cool
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Old 12-29-2010, 02:48 PM   #10
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


In my family, this would be a big deal Bird behavior is a constant......

This time of year is nesting/breeding season for owls. Owls make their nests before they breed. Also they court much sooner because rearing of the young takes longer than all other birds..........The guys you're finding are immature, and obviously unaware. 1st year birds.

Obviously, you need to cover your flue, but I wonder if you could simply smoke the fella out by starting a fire.......
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Old 12-29-2010, 04:04 PM   #11
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


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In my family, this would be a big deal Bird behavior is a constant......

This time of year is nesting/breeding season for owls. Owls make their nests before they breed. Also they court much sooner because rearing of the young takes longer than all other birds..........The guys you're finding are immature, and obviously unaware. 1st year birds.

Obviously, you need to cover your flue, but I wonder if you could simply smoke the fella out by starting a fire.......


I wouldn't recommend this. They can't open their wings in the chimney to fly out.

That only leaves one other exit, but now its covered in fire.

The poor guy, girl, it, probably wouldn't survive the ordeal.

D.

Might be good eatin' though.
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Old 12-29-2010, 07:20 PM   #12
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


yeah, I was gonna suggest a fire.

This guy was in one of the houses I was framing one morning.

The doors/windows were installed.

The only openings were the 8"x8" roof vent holes.

He must have seen a mouse something.
His one eye is closed a bit because he smacked his head on the window trying to escape when I walked in.
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Old 12-29-2010, 07:23 PM   #13
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


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His one eye is closed a bit because he smacked his head on the window trying to escape when I walked in.
Hockey pucks. I recognize that look; he's seen you for what you are.
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Old 12-29-2010, 08:55 PM   #14
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


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Hockey pucks. I recognize that look; he's seen you for what you are.

He was thinking, "Should I peck out his eyes? Or try the window again?"



Fortunately for me he tried the window again, crashed again. Then I opened the door beside him, and he flew out.
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Old 12-29-2010, 09:07 PM   #15
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


thanks for the pici don't get to see a hooter much these days
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Old 12-30-2010, 11:13 AM   #16
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


Well S.O.R.O.#4 has been successfully completed.

Ugh I got like no sleep last night.

As was stated I'm sure the little feller couldn't get out the top of the chimney. Mine has a brick "a-frame" cap with pretty small holes.

So I took home a couple of large flat pieces of card board and covered the screen with one, and set the other up so I could slide it down between the screen and fireplace to *try* and trap him.

Heh, heh, care to guess how that went?

Not too good.

So I had it set up and every time I heard him on the screen I'd try to slide it down, but 1) he'd hear me and shoot up the chimney, or 2) the stupid cardboard would get stuck.

By now it's like 3:30 am and I'm like f-it I'll try something else later.

Around 4:15 am he made his big move and busted out of the fire place and proceeded to do a few victory laps around my bedroom. I had kept the doors shut in preparation for just such an emergency.

My wife and baby never even opened an eye, and at one point he was on the headboard scoping them out. It's a good thing the baby's big. I think little "Woodsy" was hungry enough to carry him off if he could.

He flew into a corner on the floor and there I used some moving blankets to capture him, then take him outside.

Ungrateful little bugger didn't even hang around to say thanks.

This shot is from the 1st squatter, the new guy must have been his little brother (sister?). It was obviously quite a bit younger.

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Old 12-30-2010, 11:17 AM   #17
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


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Originally Posted by hughjazz View Post
He was thinking, "Should I peck out his eyes? Or try the window again?"



Fortunately for me he tried the window again, crashed again. Then I opened the door beside him, and he flew out.

Looks to me like he was thinking should I peck out his eyes, or scratch out his eyes, decisions, decisions.
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Old 12-30-2010, 02:29 PM   #18
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Re: "There's An Owl In The Fireplace"


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Looks to me like he was thinking should I peck out his eyes, or scratch out his eyes, decisions, decisions.

all I know is, if I had an owl on my headboard, I'm going for the kill.

I need one of those in the garage though, we get lot's of mice.

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