Very often I find myself birding the “Let’s see” style: let’s see what’s along this path, let’s see if any dotterels have arrived on the plains, let’s see if there’s something breeding inside this old building, etc.
I’m sure I’m not the only birder who does this. Sometimes though, it’s easy to lose sight if this explorative element of birding, especially when we go chasing round after “other people’s” birds.
Here’s a “let’s see” birding experience I had only last week. I was out on the drylands of Lleida, I had a bit of time on my hands and I saw this building.
So I said to myself “Let’s see if there’s an owl or some choughs inside that building”. There were some white dropping marks on the outside window ledge, but the first really encouraging sign was this:
A barn owl pellet (judging from its size and shape). A closer search of the surroundings also revealed this:
A barn owl feather. The signs were promising! I poked my head inside the mas and sure enough there were plenty of pellets at different stages of decay strewn around the floor. In one corner there were also lots of dropping marks too.
Then I looked in the other corner, and my search came to an end:
The remains of a barn owl dangling between a rafter and the wall. What had been the cause of the birds death? How long had it been there like that? A case for the CSI?