It must have been an Owl

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Rodger Drye
Posts: 671
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:07 am
Location: NC/Mt. Pleasant
Martin Colony History: Have been hosting and providing a sanactuary for Purple Martins for 30 years.

I try to do my part in capturing and eliminating Sparrows and Starlings. I built my own trap for Starlings which works very well. I purchased an Uncle Blain’s Sparrow Trap a few years ago and it works well also. Or should I say it worked well.?
I knew I had a couple Sparrow’s captured but I usually leave a couple Bird’s in the trap. I think it helps to attract other Bird’s.

Went out to check my trap today only thing was there was no trap.! It was gone, and something had chewed big hunks of OSB out from where I had the trap sitting. This was at the edge of the wood shed which is enclosed by a 5 ft. Chain link fence. I looked everywhere but the trap had just vanished. This was a 1st for me.

My first inclination was a Opossom, or a Coon, or Coyote. But how could they have gotten it over my 5 ft fence. Talking to a friend at church he suggested a Hawk swooped down and carried it off. I just don’t think a Hawk could accomplish such a feat and do the damage that was done. But, However, an Owl now that’s a different story. I’ve seen Great Horned Owls back in the woods some looked about 3 ft. Tall. An Owl I believe could have done the damage and carried off the whole trap. A friend of mine while traveling down the road had to stop for a bathroom break and was attacked by an Owl when he went out in the woods. He has Scares on the back of his Head, Neck, and Shoulders, to prove it. He thinks he must have got a little to close to the Owls nest and it was defending it’s young...
I’m gonna go out tomorrow and look around the woods and creek etc. and see if I can locate it.
I’ll have to enclose the wood shed with some kind of wire that will let the sparrows in but will keep the Owls out. Maybe some type of Hog or Cattle wire..... :idea:

Rodger
PMCA Member
Have been Hosting and Protecting Martin's for 30 years.
BillieJR
Posts: 668
Joined: Tue Apr 11, 2017 11:39 am
Location: Monroe, WI

Holy cow! That must be some large owl for sure!!! I bet your friend was terrified when he was attacked. I hope you are safe when you're out looking for your trap tomorrow - and I hope you find it. Good luck!
Billie from south central Wisconsin
Rodger Drye
Posts: 671
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:07 am
Location: NC/Mt. Pleasant
Martin Colony History: Have been hosting and providing a sanactuary for Purple Martins for 30 years.

BillieJR,
Yeah, I didn’t believe him at first when he told me, I thought he was making it up. Until he took his shirt off and I seen the Scares for myself.! He had really been cut up bad, and he said he thought that Bird was trying to kill him.! I’m gonna drive the UTV when I go to look for my trap. Hoping nothing attacks me!
Thanks,
Rodger
PMCA Member
Have been Hosting and Protecting Martin's for 30 years.
vman
Posts: 50
Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2017 10:42 pm
Location: wisconsin
Martin Colony History: have not had martins for last 20 yrs. trying to re establish a colony
2018 1 asy pair fledged 2

I would say it's a raccoon if it chewed away some of the wood, they are very powerful, much more than any owl.
Jim
steve r
Posts: 349
Joined: Sat Mar 20, 2004 8:16 am
Location: Antioch/Plant City Fla

X2 on the Raccoon.
flyin-lowe
Posts: 2860
Joined: Wed Mar 29, 2006 8:49 am
Location: Indiana/Henry Co.

I would guess raccoon as well. They would be stronger then an owl when it comes to dragging something away. Plus depending on how close the fence is to your shed I would think an owl would need a pretty long "runway" to take off if it was carrying something heavy. I don't think an owl could fly straight up with something in it's grasp. If your fence is 20 foot away from the shed maybe......
2020 47 of 52 cavities with nest (5/29)(HOSP Count 7)
2019- 31 Pair over 100 fledged
2018- 15 pair last count 49 fledged
2017 3 SY pair nested, 12 eggs total, fledged 10. 4 additional SY's stayed all summer but never paired/nested.
2016 1 pair fledged 4
2015 Visitors
2014 Visitors
2013 Moved 6 miles away, 1 pair fledged 2.
2012 30 pair fledged 100.
2011 12 pair (11 that nested), 43 fledged.
2010 5 pair, 21 eggs, 16 hatched, 14 fledged.
deancamp
Posts: 406
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2016 9:17 pm
Location: Raymore, MO

I would think racoon as well. I've seen them do some crazy things and would put nothing beyond their capability. There not called the masked bandit for nothing.
Rodger Drye
Posts: 671
Joined: Sun Mar 23, 2014 10:07 am
Location: NC/Mt. Pleasant
Martin Colony History: Have been hosting and providing a sanactuary for Purple Martins for 30 years.

Due to the process of elimination I found my Sparrow trap under a Storage Building next to my wood shed. It was tore up pretty good but not destroyed. I think I can repair it. I agree with most of you now that it must have been a Raccoon. He had drug it way back under my storage building and I had to get a flashlight to spot it.
He must have really been hungry and wanted those sparrows very bad. There was about a 7” diameter hole in the side wire of the cage where he must have reached in to fish out the sparrows.!
I just didn’t figure a Coon could have scaled my 5 ft. Chain Link fence with that bulky trap in it’s mouth. But you never know - anything is possible.
Well I have two things I have to get done now. Build a Chain Link wall and door on my wood shed, and finish laying block foundation under my storage building.
It will have to wait. I’ve got my Pole Anchor welded and concreted in the ground for my T-14. I’ll be working on the T-14 before I do anything else.

Rodger
PMCA Member
Have been Hosting and Protecting Martin's for 30 years.
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