Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Rowe Sanctuary Cranes and Trace Trail Owls

Not long after filming and photographing Joe Wilkins' reading on Thursday, April 8, I headed to Rowe Sanctuary not far from Kearney to view the Sandhill Cranes.

Last March, I met SF author Terry Bisson and his wife Judy at the sanctuary to enjoy the spectacle of the cranes' evening return to the Platte River sand bars.

This year, my son Cary drove in from the Boulder, CO, area and met me at the Rowe Sanctuary to experience the flight of the cranes.

We got very lucky this last week of crane viewing, for as the photographs I posted underscore, a spectacular sunset on a clear and pleasant evening provided excellent conditions.

Cary and I also managed over thirty minutes of video, trying to capture this amazing combination of activity and noise as thousands of Sandhill Cranes land on and crowd the sandbars on the Platte River.

I posted for your viewing and listening pleasure a ten-minute video that chronicles the late-afternoon-to-darkness surge of the birds.

As you will note, the numbers of birds and the level of noise increase dramatically as the video progresses.

While circumstances precluded our visiting the Crescent Moon Ale House, a highly-touted beer bar in Omaha
frequented by Warren Buffet and others, Cary and I did enjoy a spring walk on the Trace Trail.

We did see the Great-horned Owl leave its nest in a small cave along the trail, the baby owl(s) refused to appear, which disappointed me.

Cary left Saturday afternoon after our stroll, and I returned to the trail Sunday
evening and saw, as the three pictures at the conclusion of this post indicate, Great-horned Owl parent, the baby Great-horned Owl, and, a surprise, a Barn Owl that nests, as matters turn out, not far from the other owls.

The Barn Owls' flight from their cave startled me.

I will add to the Spring 2010 Trace Trail and Area photographs as the next few weeks progress.

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