Pat Hatch's PhotoJournal

Fritz is Airworthy (Almost)

This could be just about the last we will see of the owls.  I expect Fritz will be flying soon if he isn't already.  He is moving all around the large oak he lives in and in the photo below he is at the very top of the tree.  Mom is still nearby.  I think her mission now is to just to feed and provide security for Fritz.  Any day now they will be gone not to be seen until next December.

Fritz is shedding the last of his downy feathers...

For a break from the owls I'm posting a photo of a young Pilated Woodpecker that I took yesterday. I'll keep checking on Fritz and will post the departure date when it happens (for the record).

Young Pilated Woodpecker

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Bad News about Hans

I got the call this morning from the Florida Wildlife Hospital about Hans.  They had to put him down.  It became apparent that he had a defect in his legs that was preventing him from gripping with his talons.  An x-ray revealed that the joints in the hips were malformed and he was not able to use his talons properly.  This explains why Hans was lying down on the branch as you can see in the photo the day I found him on the ground.  He probably couldn't grip the branch properly.  My theory is that this is probably what caused him to fall out the tree.  Many thanks to the Florida Wildlife Hospital for all that they do to help these guys!

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Mother & Child Reunion

I checked on the owls today and all appears to be well.  The one remaining fledgling (Fritz) seems to be doing well and moving further away from the nest each day.  Fritz spends most of the day by himself so this is a rare moment when mom is keeping him company for a bit.

Fritz & Mom

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