Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Wednesday 27 October

5am Central African Time: I wake up in time to see the middle chick deftly flap / hop up onto a wooden perch that is around the lip of the pot container. It hopped back into the nest to join the waiting Teeny, with an expression on its face that read "Oh-I'm-so-clever!".

Pot Plant Owl was watching the scene, and I think willing the other chick to give it a try. It all became too much for the chick on the balcony. With a little distressed call, it scurried into a corner by the side of the pot, where it is currently hiding.

6:30am Central African Time: Pot Plant Owl left the balcony and within two minutes, we quickly moved the table back to the window, and put our parrot's jungle gym on the floor by the wooden perches. The chicks can use this jungle gym as a stepping stone to get to / from the wooden perches. The first clutch used the jungle gym and used to eat the wood and practise balancing on it.

One chick spent all the day on the balcony floor - its choice of roosting spot tucked away between the side of the pot and the railing. Early evening, the chick ventured out and eventually made its own way back up to the nest using the wooden perches.

Nightfall came quickly, and with it, a new zest for exploration. One of the chicks made it onto the balcony pillar behind the tree, and stayed there for a while until food was brought it. At the mere sight of the food, it jumped back in the nest.

It was just moments later when a fierce storm hit. The tree in the pot was blowing around, and all three chicks huddled closely together. There was a lot of thunder and lightning, but little rain. During the storm, Pot Plant Owl and Pappa were sheltering - probably in trees nearby. As soon as the storm subsided, the food relay began, and our little adventurer climbed back up to the balcony pillar.

Just before going to bed, I noticed another huge storm in the distance, and the little adventurer still on the pillar. I watched while the chick stood quietly on the pillar, gazing out over what is left of the wetland we are trying to save. Pot Plant Owl flew in with a rat (which must have been irresistable) and the chick again joined its siblings.


  1. So glad they are ok. I got a bit worried yesterday because I could see only one on the floor and one in the pot.
    I think the two youngest are in the pot this morning with mother :-)

  2. Hi PPO, thanks for your reply to me the other day giving me the Ustream site. I certainly do watch the webcam and could barely tear myself away last night whilst watching the young explorers. Thank goodness Teeny stayed in the nest. I hope the parrots are not too upset at losing their gym! Thanks for all the blog entries, photos and chat (and time) you are giving us. Someone called you Fairy Godparents to the owl family -- you certainly are! JanetX

  3. Hi again,
    You asked about help with shipping books overseas. People travelling between SA and other countries could bring some but I expect they are heavy so would affect baggage allowances. However do we have any airline flight/cabin crew amongst us who would be willing to carry some? Just a thought. Janet X

  4. Thanks for the updates,,

    This is going to be so exciting now,, as the chicks get older and more curious,, what an adventure for all five owls,, it's been a pleasure to watch every moment, thank you


  5. WOW!!! How far they have come in such a short time. It's hard to believe they were just puffy little lumps a few short weeks ago. A question-actually 2 questions. 1. Why is there no sound on the camera during daylight and 2. Will you be re-setting the camera a little further back so we can watch the antics on the balcony floor? Thanks ever so much for being the protectors of these majestic and gracious birds.

  6. I see two are back in the pot and the eldest behind the pot on the balcony wall to the right of the pot. I hope it is not stuck.

  7. Hi Kathy
    They definately grow quickly! Answers to your questions:
    1) Sound- off forthe most part during the day because the owls are sleeping. Also, we work from home and our office is right next door to the webcam. If the office gets busy / noisy, you will hear it all.
    2) We've moved the table further away and moved the owl box closer to the nest this morning. This should make viewing easier because the owl box is a favourite toy to play on. We will do our best to move the camera to get as much in as possible, but it is fixed to the wall so there is only so much we have to play with.

    Hi Panda
    No, I dont think the big one is stuck. There is a fair bit of room for these owls and it doesnt appear distressed. If it doesnt come out of its hiding spot this evening, then we will know something needs attention.

    Take care all!

  8. Hi Janet

    Thanks for the advice. I got a reply from Eric so will take it from there.

    Kind regards

  9. OK, thanks Tracy.
    I can see it sitting in the sun and seems to be moving about a bit :-)

  10. oh, the middle chick has gone up onto the wall behind the pot plant!! I hope it doesn't fall down to the ground below.

  11. One of the parent's just flew in and now all three are back in the pot. I can breathe again lol

  12. Ma c'è un grosso temporale con tanto vento?

  13. Tracy. Are you having a thunder storm there? I see a lot of what looks like lightening flashes.

  14. Oh, you are having a really bad storm there now!!

  15. Thanks for the info! Just an FYI-our city is home to the National Aviary of the United States. We are members and go there frequently. They have a free flight indoor show with many different species-eagles, owls, vultures, etc. Very impressive. I spoke to one of the handlers today and they are going to see about having the PPO stream run in the raptor gallery. Pretty cool. They also have a huge gift store and may be contacting you about the book. Thanks again for all you do. We should all take a lesson in getting along from these little ones.

  16. Hi Kathy

    Thanks so much - it'll be great to stream PPO in the raptor gallery, esp with the time zone difference (you are awake when all the action happens). I'd love to be a member of an organisation like yours.

    Hi Pands
    Yes, bad storm, but all coped well. They are quite resilient little things.