Great Gray Owl in Hanover, NH

I noted recently that Great Gray Owls have shown up in the Montreal area and how several of my friends went up and found one.  Now, one of the regal birds has been seen just across the NH border in woods north of Hanover, NH.    I understand that a birder, Steve Mirick, contacted a photographer/birder, Jim Block, who took the first wonderful set of photos.

Yesterday, a hardy core of birders went to the area. One, Len Medlock, saw the bird about 9:00 AM and took this photograph. (Note: he has all rights reserved so I did not use the photo here.)   Then, he and others, braved cold and stiff winds until 5:00 PM to watch the swampy area where it was seen – with no further spottings.  A southern Vermont birder, looking elsewhere, got a quick look just after 5:00.  I expect that dozens of folks will look today and in the days ahead.

To get there:  Take Exit 18 off I-89 and head north, then take the Etna Road to Trescott. Trescott Road runs from Hanover to Etna for 3-4 miles. The owl, according the Jim Block, was first seen about half way along the road near the Water Company Land.  It was a 10 yards off the road when first seen.  Then it was seen in the marsh area.  Jason Lambert and Len Medlock left yellow ribbons at the parking lot entrance to the Appalachian trail (the parking area is across from a 35 mph speed sign on Trescott Rd.)  The trail leads to the area where the owl was seen.  It’s about a 3/4 mile along the trail to a marsh area – they left yellow tape along the way to guide you.  Here is a map the Len posted:

A trail map to the marsh by Len Medlock

A trail map to the marsh by Len Medlock

The best way to keep up with this fast-evolving search is to join the Google Groups “NHBirds” group.  It is easy to join and the fastest way to get updates on the success, or lack of it, from the many birders looking for this great owl.  Good luck.

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