Horned Owls hoot in Anza Valley

The Great Horned Owl is very recognizable, yet hard to spot in the wild, due to its nighttime nature. Dominique Rauton photo
As dusk descends on the Anza Valley, insistent “whhooo, whooos!” can be heard echoing through the still air. These are the haunting calls of the male Great Horned Owl. According to the Audubon Society, “The Great Horned Owl is in many ways the quintessential owl. Picture an owl in your head, and you’ve probably imagined the Great Horned. It is a large, thick-bodied bird with large eyes and two distinct tufts on its head. It is relatively common throughout California and North America. You can find this owl in all kinds of habitat – deserts, forests, meadows, wetlands, grasslands, even backyards. It is equally capable of attacking larger birds and mammals, as it is of smaller prey, such as mice or insects.” The Great Horned Owl, Bubo virginianus, is the Valley’s most com
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