Sunday, March 13, 2011

Cat Fight!



OK, so they aren't cats, but it's the females fighting!

Scarlett (named after Scarlett O'Hara) is a wild, unmated female who showed up about three weeks ago. Apparently she wants Rusty, and she wants him bad. Her level of aggression has escalated from hooting later in the morning than she should and starting earlier in the afternoon than is wise (she gets mobbed by crows a lot), to an all-out fray yesterday.

Starting around 1 PM (yes...early in the afternoon!), Scarlett showed up in the yard hooting. She landed on the cage many times, including on the "rain roof"--an area of slats covered with screen to allow the rain to fall through. Rusty and Iris were beside themselves, hooting like crazy, flying around, and holding their feathers very compressed with ear tufts up.

Eventually Scarlett switched over to squawks and started landing on the ground, trying to find a way into the cage. She landed on the braces of the cage. She was doing anything to get in.

She even flew into and hung on the chain link on the west side of the cage, where she could see inside. Iris was the one who met her challenge by flying at the chain link to attack her. Thankfully there is screen on the outside of the cage and chain link on the inside, so they couldn't get at each other. WOW!!

This disruption sure isn't helping nesting efforts. Despite the daily ruckus, Rusty and Iris keep mating, Rusty feeds Iris, and they dig in the nest. Early this morning it even looked like Iris tried to preen Rusty, even though he wasn't interested.

Stay tuned for the next exciting episode of "As the Nest Box Turns."

8 comments:

  1. Thanks for that. Iris is quite a girl.I really laughed out loud. MapleOwl

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  2. At least i wont be going crazy like in begining trying to figure out WHAT was trying to get in, that night, i did'nt know what to do or how to alert you Karla that something was, was a rough night listening to that, but started watching R&I & the hooting & they were'nt scared, was fun then when i heard the owl & watching R&I trying to follow the owl around & they were hooting & bonding like mad & i laughed so then to think, Au!now i know why Iris turned her attention to Rusty, he was happy tho. I was able to watch for month's all in AM, but , can't so much now, Darn!! wish you could film what's going on out side, have an extra cam corder, that's what i use to watch wild life out sidetape for 8hr's & see so much would'nt know about, Scarlett sound's like quite the OWL. would love to see her.. Jackie Theisen

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  3. Hi Karla,

    The Ustream nest site is down.

    maxi23

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  4. Karla,

    Is Iris alright?

    maxi23

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  5. Karla, when will cam be on & with sound?. getting to be a loooonnnggg!!! time now.. any info please.. Jackie Theisen

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  6. My new cable arrived today and it didn't do the trick. So back to the drawing board on this one to figure out sound....

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  7. Hmm...just looked at the Ustream window (it's 05:08 on 21 Mar 2011), and both Rusty and Iris are on the floor by the bath pan. (Can't hear anything on either that channel or the Cornell cam, though). Iris(?) has just headed into the back left corner, while Rusty is still by the bath pan. Looking for something, perhaps?

    (And at 05:11, Rusty has gone to the top of the hide box.)

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  8. Nice catch! It was actually 7:08 AM. :D

    The were both on the ground drinking out of the bath pan at various times, then Scarlett started hooting. I think they were walking around on the floor trying to see her, as they can't usually see her from any of the perches. Rusty was in the bath pan a couple of times, but didn't take an all-out bath. I think Iris would like to bath, but doesn't have the courage to hop in yet.

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