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Silly Saturday Night Post: Eyes In The Back of Her Head

This western screech owl seems to have eyes in the back of her head.

"Grandma," I asked, "How did you know I did that?"

"I've got eyes in the back of my head."

Western Screech OwlMy Grandma said that to me more than half a century ago in her kitchen on the eastern shore of Virginia.  I was trying to snag a cookie.  I'll bet yours said the same to you when you were knee high to a grasshopper. 

So when this Western Screech Owl twisted her head around to keep an eye on me, I burst out laughing.  "Hey, Grandma!" I said, as I clicked the shutter.  "You really do have eyes in the back of your head!"

A pair of Western Screech Owls made their nest this year in a saguaro "boot" I put up in the corner of our back ramada.  We can see the saguaro boot from the kitchen window.  A dove had built her nest on the top, but didn't stay around long when the owl showed up with the eviction notice.

Western Screech Owl in Saguaro "boot"From time to time, the hummingbird (photo left) played brave and did her best to drive the owl from its nest, to no avail. 

Two nights ago, we had turned in early, and had the blinds open and the downlights on outside on the ramada. 

My Darlin' and I were treated to a private half hour wildlife show with both parent owls and the one fledgling flying from perch to perch on our ramada.

Surrounded as we are by Tucson Mountain Park, our community, Tucson Estates II, is a birders paradise.  People come to Tucson from all over the world courtesy of the Tucson Audubon Society and their birding fieldtrips.  You can see why.

 

If you'd like to make Tucson your retirement home, give me a call.  We have great relationships with some of Tucson's finest REALTORS, and money's not nearly as hard to get as the media would lead you to believe.

 ___________________

I'm Mike in Tucson, your preferred Tucson, AZ Mortgage lender.
Mike Jones (Tucson Mortgage Company, LLC): Loan Officer in Tucson, Pima County, Arizona
Call me
if I can help you with a purchase or refi mortgage;
(520) 349-9090

Photos copyright Mike in Tucson

Comment balloon 18 commentsMike Jones • July 04 2009 11:40PM

Comments

Hi Mike!
How fun! I have to ask...is a ramada kind of like a gazebo? We don't have ramadas here in California (to my knowledge)!

Posted by Paula Swayne, Realtor-Land Park, East Sac & Curtis Park -Dunniga (Dunnigan, Realtors, Sacramento (916) 425-9715) about 10 years ago

Mike, great photos of the owls!  I am also curious as to what a ramada is? 

Posted by Tony & Darcy Cannon, The C Team (Aubrey and Associates Realty) about 10 years ago

Mike, what a lively home you have this summer! It's a wonder you get any sleep at all!

Posted by Maria Morton, Kansas City Real Estate 816-560-3758 (Chartwell Kansas City Realty) about 10 years ago

 

Ramsey Canyon is on my bucket list. I have heard that this area is a birders paradise and the display of birds is really great...

Your building consultant for life in Nashville, TN

 

Posted by TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc., Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029 (Complete Home Inspections, Inc.) about 10 years ago

Mike,

It sounds like a great evening.

Brenda and I kep a boat on Lake Mead for many years we never went out over night with out seeing and enjoying the wildlife. Yet most boater we knew had spent decades on the lake and never seen anything other than fish. Like every thing we find what we seek. If you look for the beauty around you you'll find it. You my friend are very good at seeing and recording the obvious beauty in life.

Bill

Posted by William J. Archambault, Jr. (The Real Estate Investment Institute ) about 10 years ago

Bill,

There's beauty all around us if we look for it, isn't there?  Thanks for your comment. Best to Brenda.

Michael,

Ramsey Canyon is perhaps the best place in the world for hummingbirds.  We've been there, and it's worthwhile!

Maria,

We have our share of birds and critters!

Tony, Darcy & Paula,

A ramada is a covered patio--our back porch at ground level.  Ours is 50' wide.  The center 16' is 18' deep, and each side is 10' deep.  The master bedroom, the living room and the kitchen all open out onto the ramada.

Paula,

Thanks for being the first to comment!

Mike in Tucson

Posted by Mike Jones, Mike Jones NMLS 223495 (SUNSTREET MORTGAGE, LLC (BK-0907366, NMLS 145171) ) about 10 years ago

Hi Mike, love the pictures!  Hummingbirds are ferocious little critters and territorial but trying to compete with an owl... that's quite something!

Posted by Silvia Dukes PA, Broker Associate, CRS, CIPS, SRES, Florida Waterfront and Country Club Living (Tropic Shores Realty - Ich spreche Deutsch!) about 10 years ago

Silvia,

I think the hummingbird must have had a nest nearby, and recognized the owl as a predator.  Thanks for coming by to comment.

Mike in Tucson

Posted by Mike Jones, Mike Jones NMLS 223495 (SUNSTREET MORTGAGE, LLC (BK-0907366, NMLS 145171) ) about 10 years ago

Mike that is absolutely amazing! 

We have barn owls and screech owls that roost/hunt in the woods behind our house.  Along with some hawks, turkeys and an occasional peacock/pea hen.  But they are certainly not as visible as your two tenants!

Our hummies are plentiful though.  As long as I keep that nectar full ... they show up and entertain for hours.  The hummies have become so used to us that they will fly over my shoulder to the feeder and not miss a beat if I walk by.  It's kind of a compliment, I guess, to not be feared by one of God's creatures that is so small.

Posted by Carol Smith (Casmi Photography) about 10 years ago

Mike, that is just an awesome picture of the owl, beautifully amazing.

                                                              ~ Life is Good

Posted by Roy A. Peterson, P.R.E.I. (Domicile Analysis of Texas) about 10 years ago

I've never seen a humingbird and an owl in the same shot. Thanks for sharing.

Posted by Larry Brewer - Benchmark Realty llc (Benchmark Realty LLc) about 10 years ago

That's nice you had that memory of your grandmother!  I will hear an expression or smell something cooking or hear a song and think of mine...it's a special feeling!  I love the pictures, especially the one  with the hummingbird, just amazing!!

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) about 10 years ago

We just bought a new camera so we wouldn't miss opportunities like this one. Cool photos.

Posted by Terry & Bonnie Westbrook, Westbrook Realty - Grand Rapids Forest Hills MI Re (Westbrook Realty Broker-Owner) about 10 years ago

That's a beautiful story, Mike.  I didn't know Grandma as well because of my age, but am glad to hear.  Sounds like you have created a nature home in your ramada for many generations of birds to come.  Who would have thought all the fun that would come from bringing that piece of cactus shell back home one day?

Posted by John Morgan about 10 years ago

JD,

It was Grandma Michael, and she was one awesome lady!  I hope you're planning a trip soon; Ginny saw a doe Mulie in the back yard drinking from the birdbath this evening.

Terry,

I'm looking forward to the results.

Sharon,

Isn't memory a wonderful thing?  The hummingbird shot is one of my alltime favorites.

Larry,

Neither had I, until I clicked the shutter.  LOL

Roy,

Thanks for commenting; it's good to see you.

Carol,

We feed the hummingbirds, and they're quite fond of us.  LOL

Mike in Tucson

Posted by Mike Jones, Mike Jones NMLS 223495 (SUNSTREET MORTGAGE, LLC (BK-0907366, NMLS 145171) ) about 10 years ago

Hi Mike, Great Photos!! We have owls, We can only hear them of the night, but they never come close enough for us to see them.  My Grandmother had eyes in the back of her head too!! GREAT POST thanks for sharing!!!

BARBARA

Posted by Barbara Flannery, "Homes for Everyone In London Kentucky" (USA Realty,Inc.) about 10 years ago

Mike - My mom always said "Every Mother has eyes in the back of her head!"  I think she wanted us to be concerned that anybody could see us doing something wrong, no matter where we were!  Great pictures (as always!)

Posted by Eleanor Thorne, Equity Resources 919-649-5058 (Equity Resources) about 10 years ago

Eleanor,

...and no doubt she passed that ability on to you.  :)  Thanks for commenting; it's good to see you.  Best to Steve.

Barbara,

Thank you!  Those owls are closer than you might imagine.  Look for them in the evening.

Mike in Tucson

Posted by Mike Jones, Mike Jones NMLS 223495 (SUNSTREET MORTGAGE, LLC (BK-0907366, NMLS 145171) ) about 10 years ago

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