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December 30, 2013 - 12:34pm

Photo: Snowy owl at Genesee County Airport

posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia.

Amy Vlack sent in this picture of the snowy owl that's been hanging out at the Genesee County Airport this winter.

Elizabeth Downie
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I was lucky enough to see a Snowy Owl (maybe it was even that one) earlier afternoon on Saturday. S/he was sitting on the westbound ramp bridge guardrail to the I-90 from the Batavia 48 exit. Stunning! I wonder if it will find a mate, or if it already has one... it would be nice if s/he would stick around!

Billie Owens
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Apparently, the beautiful snowy owl is not welcome at New York airports as aviators deem it a threat to safety, according to this link from the Hartford-Courant:

http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/la-na-ny-snowy-owls-20131211,0,6...

Bea McManis
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An owl, quite possibly the mate, was found injured at the airport last week. I believe it is recovering at a shelter. I remember seeing the picture on facebook.

Billie Owens
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I hope the bird recovers and can meet up with its (possible) mate soon.

Kyle Couchman
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Bird can be very tough Billie. In 8th grade I rescued a Blue Jay that I thought had been killed by a golf ball. (I witnessed and heard the hit.) I recovered him and was able to set the wing. My Chemistry teacher was also an amateur ornithologist. He banded the bird and I took him home to feed him and keep him protected. About a month later I was woke up by the unique sound of a blue jay's call when the morning sun hit the cage.

I spent a week getting him to flap his wings by raising and lowering my hand. Eventually by midweek he could do short flights. By the end of the week he took off and I didn't see him again until summertime. I left the cage out under a weeping willow in our backyard. I found out he would go there at night. By the end of summer whenever I was out at the pool he would come land on my shoulder and eat wild birdseed from my hand. We left a feeder out all winter and I hung the cage in the tree.m He was a she and raised 2 generations of chicks in that cage. She would come back now and again over a couple of years and perch near me but never as friendly as that first year.

Thats why I am partial to Blue Jays....my wife is always amazed when I can distinguish a blue jay call in the spring and point them out easily to her. I pray that these owls are a bit tougher than my Blue Jay.

Billie Owens
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Kyle, what a heartwarming story. I always think of blue jays as noisy, screeching birds, but they sure are pretty and distinctive.

Mardell Lamb
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Kyle,
That.is.awesome! Wow!

kevin kretschmer
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Speaking of Snowy Owls, a photographer acquaintance of mine got this shot of one in flight earlier this month up along Lake Ontario. Absolutely stunning.

https://scontent-b-ord.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-prn1/1488278_656108064441871...

Kyle Couchman
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I'm gonna have to hike up to the airport and see and possibly photograph one of these birds myself. I cant let an opportunity like this go by even if I have to waddle up there in snowpants and a parka LOL.

JIM NIGRO
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Amy Vlack, thanks for sharing..........judging from the local weather forecast for the next few days, these owls will feel right at home!

JIM NIGRO
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Kevin - thanks for the link....can't say enough about the pic. Incredible photo, an awesome moment in time.

kevin kretschmer
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Mr. Nigro - here's another shot I'm sure you'll appreciate. Doug Reagan took it the day before yesterday near Keuka Lake.

https://scontent-b-ord.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-frc3/3493_666520953400582_93...

Bea McManis
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Kevin, great shot. I can see that in a "put a caption to this photo" feature.

JIM NIGRO
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Kevin - Super photo! That's something you don't see everyday...maybe a working relationship of sorts, a form of symbiosis - the turkey's superior eyesight combined with the scenting ability of the whitetail.... Once again, thanks.

Kyle Couchman
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LOL ....You mean you didn't hear about the concert near Keuka Lake? I heard the Animals got together for a free concert. This must have been right after the last set... LOL

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxNEiZhpinY

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