Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Otus the Eastern screech-owl

We couldn’t resist a little humor with our post today.  We would also like to give you some background into what is happening with the photos we posted today. 

Molting is the process of replacing old, worn feathers with new ones.  Not every feather is replaced annually, and molt patterns may vary per species and by physical area on the body. 

Otus, one of TRC’s Eastern screech-owls, is molting the feathers around her face very heavily.  You can see (particularly the last photo) that pin feathers (the start of new feathers) are already visible to replace those which have been molted.  Otus, as well as all our education ambassadors, go through this process each year.  Since she is not “looking her best”, she is taking a short summer vacation from programs.

Pin feathers can be seen.

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