I returned to the park yesterday afternoon to look for and watch Charles, Sarah and this year's offspring. I found Charles where he had been in the morning, in a tree he's been using this winter mostly as a fly-to perch. This new perch is in a tree between The Great Northern and The Overlook Hotel Tree. Sarah was out of the nest and in a low branch of The Overlook Hotel Tree, looking especially magnificent.
I headed down toward the nest tree and from a distance, I saw that there were two owlets in the hollow!!
Here's a cropped version of the same shot, which makes it easier to see the youngsters. The one that I saw in the morning is on the left and the second owlet is on the right.
It was amazing to see two and I can't help but wonder if there are three. Average clutch size for Great Horned Owls is two-three. Clutches of one, four and five to occur but are far less frequent. Notice how the second owlet, the one on the right, is smaller and less mature than its sibling on the left. GHOs lay their eggs asynchronously, at a different times. Usually each egg is laid one to two days apart but the time between each egg laying can be as much as five to ten days. This asynchronous egg-laying results in asynchronous egg hatching and thus owlets of different ages and stages.
I went to get a closer look of the owlets but the second owlet had descended down into the nest was out of sight. This owlet may have gotten a case of what Wendy calls, "the shys." I managed to get some other shots of the first owlet.
Great stuff for sure! The evening continued with many highlights including a visit from a new owl friend, Taffy Ross, Charles returning twice with food after very short absences (well done, Charles) and a very close encounter with Sarah. Thanks for reading!