strange owl?

proudgm_03(6 MO)July 27, 2007

I was out the other morning (4:00) letting the spoiled brat out. I was hollering at her because as usual she was ignoring me and not coming back. All at once I heard this God awful noise. It sounded like a siren as it gathers pitch and then ended in a hoo, hoo, hoo. It was very, very close. It scared the bejezus out of me. I hollered at the dog and started toward the door and luckily she came too. I have heard many owl calls but I have never heard this one and don't want to hear it again. It was too eerie, almost human. I went online to listen to owl sounds and I never found anything like it. Now I have this picture of a huge carniverous, stalking owl in my head! LOL

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outdoor-girl(6)

I'm guessing you might've heard a screech owl. They can sound pretty spooky, especially when they're close by...but quite harmless as they're our smallest owl (and my personal favorite). To me they sound kind of like a creepy miniature horse. I worked as a state park naturalist for several years and had many visiors tell me of getting "the bejezus" scared out of them by what could only be a screech owl.
To make sure, you can check the attached website. Either way, rest assured that it's not a huge giant carnivirous owl stalking you! :)

Here is a link that might be useful: Owling.com

    Bookmark   July 27, 2007 at 5:16PM
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proudgm_03(6 MO)

Thanks for the site link. I had already checked all the owls on that one and never heard anything that sounded like a heard. Maybe it was a type of call that they had not recorded. My dog had chased a rabbit away so maybe it was a "Thanks a lot you big jerk that was my supper!" call. Normally I like to hear owls call and will answer to try to get them to call more but I definetly don't want to hear this one again.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2007 at 6:46PM
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oakleif(z6 AR)

I played both screech owls and it sure scared my 2 dogs.
vickie

    Bookmark   July 28, 2007 at 12:05AM
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outdoor-girl(6)

Hmmm...now you've got me wondering! Maybe it wasn't an owl at all, but another nocturnal bird? Maybe a visiting owl not usually found in the region? If you find out, I'd love to know!

    Bookmark   July 28, 2007 at 9:42AM
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proudgm_03(6 MO)

Well, I can tell you that I don't plan on going looking for him. LOL!

    Bookmark   July 29, 2007 at 1:14AM
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lilion

We get a barn owl around our house sometimes - it scared my son so bad when he was little he still won't sleep with the window open even though he's 12 now and it was several years ago. Did you listen to that one? WAY scarier than a barn owl and in real life the one we had almost sounded like a woman screaming - or maybe someone strangling a cat. Really loud and scary.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2007 at 9:23AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

I enjoy hearing the screech owls in our woods, but I can see how it would scare someone not familiar with them.
Did it sound like this....

Here is a link that might be useful: owl

    Bookmark   July 30, 2007 at 11:07AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

How about this one?
Click on "Listen to songs of this species"

Here is a link that might be useful: link

    Bookmark   July 30, 2007 at 11:12AM
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proudgm_03(6 MO)

It didn't sound like any of those. I've listened to all the owl sites. I'm assuming that it was an owl making a call that no one has recorded. I'm sure they make all kinds of sounds but since they aren't often seen and are nocturnal I'm sure it is hard to get recordings of all their calls. He was probably telling me to shut up and quit hollering at the dog. LOL!

    Bookmark   July 31, 2007 at 12:38AM
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christie_sw_mo(Z6)

Did it sound like an animal in distress? I was thinking perhaps the owl had caught something and it was crying out. When a snake caught a baby rabbit in our yard it surprised me how much noise a tiny rabbit could make.

I'm glad my two Shelties can hold it in until I get up. I wouldn't want to have to let them out at 4 in the morning. lol

Outdoor-Girl - Welcome to the Ozarks Forum! I just noticed how new you are. Glad you are joining in. It must have been an interesting job to work as a state park naturalist. Wildlife and gardening go hand in hand.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2007 at 12:42PM
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proudgm_03(6 MO)

No. It was definetly the owl.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2007 at 12:54PM
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lilion

You listened to the barn owl, right? I've never understood why screech owls kind of trill and barn owls screech.

Here is a link that might be useful: owl calls

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 9:58AM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

I am wondering if it were two differant types of owls, since there was also Hoo Hoos. I didn't know of the two sounds coming from the same owl. There are 3 or 4 differant species of owls in our woods. It might have just been a coincidence that two differant species called at the same time?

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 10:49AM
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lilion

You know, that's entirely possible. I know I've never heard a hoot from the barn owl and while some of the other's make different types of calls for warning/mating/etc I don't think they'd switch from one to the other so quickly. So maybe they were both just talking at once.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 12:23PM
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outdoor-girl(6)

Hmmm...as much as I'd like to know what owl it was, I think it's destined to remain a mystery! Critters make such a myriad of noises, and it seems only their most common are found on the net. And two owls talking at once is totally possible...we've probably all heard how crazy Barred owls sound during their mating season when there are 3 or 4 all going at one time!

Thanks christie sw mo for the nice welcome! I'm really enjoying reading through the forum, and learning some good stuff too...this is a GREAT resource. I'm originally a SW MO native from outside Jasper...now I'm an Arkie. Where are you?

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 12:53PM
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pauln(z7B Arkansas)

Screech owls have many calls and voices. I've heard them many times, but once one made the sounds that could only come from some sort of possessed demonic creature. We were camping way way out in the Ozark wilderness having a grand time when out of nowhere very near came this gawdawful banshee wailing such as I've never heard before or since. I didn't know whether or not to run and jump into the creek or scream back at this creature. I've heard screech owls since and they sound nothing like this night. It could've been another species, but my hunch is screech. Proud, I understand fully your response from that night.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 2:55PM
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christie_sw_mo(Z6)

Outdoorgirl - I'm a little west of Springfield and have lived in this area all my life. Glad you're enjoying the Ozarks forum.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 4:33PM
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proudgm_03(6 MO)

I have doubts that it was two owls. Probably just a call that no one has heard. And he was really close. Was probably about to pounce on that rabbit when we came out. And like you pauln, at first I didn't know whether to run, scream back or just wet myself. Thankfully, I chose to run. Wetting myself would have been too embarassing and screaming back might have ticked him off! LOL! I was afraid though that he might get the mutt. But I guess she heard the panic in my voice and came to me.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 9:16PM
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