The herons may have left their nests already, but when a crew arrived to make essential repairs to a popular rookery in Utah, new occupants were already enjoying the area, and construction was halted. According to the Deseret News, a clutch of three baby barn owls was discovered at the great blue heron rookery at the Farmington Bay Waterfowl Management Area, and the project to replace toppled platforms and reinforce towers the large wading birds use for nesting has been postponed.
To give the barn owls time to mature safely without stressing the parents, the project will not resume until at least October, after they will be large enough to leave the nest. At that time, new platforms will be installed to replace those damaged by a windstorm in December 2011. The herons will begin nesting in the rookery as early as February.
Have you had unexpected baby birds around this year? Share your nestling news in the comments!
Great Blue Heron
Photo © Chuck Abbe