Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Earth Day : Grass Fires and an Owl

In honor of Earth Day I took some photos of the aftermath left by grass fires that mysteriously start all times of the day and night in our area.  Spring and Fall brings out the “fire bugs.” Sometimes if fires are not being set we wonder “Who is in jail?”  During the winter we are safe and during the summer if we have enough rainfall we are safe because green vegetation doesn’t burn as well as the dry vegetation.

Grass Fires are mysterious

There was a strong wind the other day, the fire was set on both sides of the road, but it burned much better to the north.  Burr Oaks are a great fire break, it burned some into the brush and then went out…or was put out by the local Volunteer Fire Department.

Grass Fire near the old farm

That is the Fire Chief’s place in the distance and the old farmstead where I grew up.

There is a ban on burning here in Minnesota as of Monday April 21st.

On our drive we saw an Owl at the edge of the Highway.

Owl April 20 2014

He/she was a beauty.  I think it may have been sick or injured…perhaps stunned momentarily.  We went back the next morning to see if it was still there and it was not in the ditch or at the edge of the field.  We hope it recovered and flew off!  I think this might be a Saw-Whet Owl. It was a rare opportunity to see one so close up…he thought we were pretty interesting.

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23 comments:

  1. It looks like the snow is all gone (halleluiah!) That is an most interesting Owl. Saw-whet's are little guys - about the size of your hand.

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    1. I wonder if it is a Hawk Owl? Maybe a bird expert will drop by! :)

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  2. Grass fires are scary....we have them in the summer on the prairie, along with high winds. I once, accidently set my own pasture on fire. Actually, it was my handyman that did it. It scared me to death, trying to move all the animals, including one very frightened horse. Luckily the volunteer fire department came quickly to put it out. As for owls, I have never seen one this close-up....would love to experience it. Lucky you!

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  3. Happy Earth Day, lucky they were so fast putting out the fire, great....love the owl picture, so sweet looking, Blessings Francine.

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  4. I knew grass fires happened, but didn't realize they're were often deliberately set by fire-bugs. Not an issue here - I don't think (?) - we're either suburban houses or woods.
    The owl photo is amazing; he must have been stunned to sit for his portrait.

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  5. What a beautiful owl. Other that a zoo I only saw an owl up close once. He was sitting on my neighbors roof just a hootin' away. They are such beautiful birds. Sorry to hear fire season has started by you already.

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  6. Sometimes a bird will simply sit on the ground for no reason other than to rest. He's a cutie!

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  7. Ah yes, the Spring burn season! It happens here, too.

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  8. I'm thinking a Saw-whet or possibly a Boreal owl. Wish I could see its breast. :)

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  9. Happy Earth Day ~ such a cute little owl (love his eyes) - hopefully he is up and out of danger :)

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  10. Uncontrolled fires are scary. Many years ago we watched as fire that started in a little trailer roared through a whole lot of adjacent barns. Hope it greens up soon or stays wet enough to put an end to those 'mysterious' fires.
    Hope the owl was okay. Do you have any bird re-hab places nearby? Good to know in case you come across an injured raptor. We saw a hawk on the side of the road somewhat like. It was injured, we borrowed a crate from the animal shelter down the road, threw a blanket over it and got it the crate. A guy from the raptor re-hab picked it up from there. We could have followed along with it's recovery via their website, but we never did. Now I wish I had taken the time to do that.

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  11. I worry about fire out where we live. People burn trash piles and some burn trash in barrels in their yards. We live in a classy neighborhood! :) Hope the owl recovered and flew away. Poppy picked up an owl from the middle of the highway, wrapped his jacket around the owl's shoulders, and brought it home. It sat very still in the passenger seat all the way. We carried it to a nearby wildlife shelter a few miles from here. We like to think that it recovered

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  12. One wonders if he was stunned from hitting a car. The do come back after the shock of the hit and sometimes they don't. We have burn ban in the city for another month but the county hasn't declared one. They are busy burning off prairies and they haven't gotten out of control like they have in the past.

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  13. Female short-eared? Can't see the photo well enough to see dark triangles around the eyes it they are more likely to be seen in the daytime and on the ground.

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  14. Since these fires are along the road , could they be from cigarettes?

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  15. We have a lot of brush fires here in SoCal all year long and it can be very scary.

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  16. I never thought much about fires until I moved down here and they have "fire danger" warnings mostly in the Fall when it's been hot and dry all Summer. I look around and I am surrounded by woods filled with dry tinder! YIKES!
    Get me out of here!
    I love the owl....all owls really and long before they were so "popular". I guess I just love all creatures. We had a hoot owl or screech owl on the farm....it sounded more like a screech.

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  17. That owl is lovely! Hope it recovered and flew away safely.

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  18. Your owl looks so forlorn...I hope it recovered and flew away safely!

    Are you serious about accelerants? You really do have an arson problem! :(

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  19. What a beautiful owl! I also hope he's all right.

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  20. Those fires are scary!!
    But what a beautiful owl. I hope it was okay and flew away.
    Enjoy the rest of your week. Aren't you glad you're not working at the museum this year? ;)

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  21. What a find! Hopefully he was okay. Can't believe you've got snow again, but what a nice picture of Chance!

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Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your comments! If you have a question I will try to answer it here. Connie