Yesterday morning Joan said that there was a mucky mark on the lounge window and that the Window Cleaner had only just been the other day for the first time since the start of Lockdown. Maybe a bird had done it.
The impression was pretty detailed and we thought about pigeon size. We looked outside, as a blackbird had smashed into the window a few years ago and did not survive. No sign this time so we hope that this bird is ok.
Here is a closer version of the impression, which I have darkened a bit so the grey impression, lit by the sun, shows up more against our evergreen hedge.
I know that we have Tawny Owls in Gledhow Valley, Leeds, but I have only seen one sitting in a tree at dusk and of course heard them. I looked up Tawny Owl in our RSPB Handbook of British Birds, by Peter Holden and Tim Cleeves. “37-39cm. As large as a Woodpigeon. Has a tubby body, large round head and rounded wings. Its face is surrounded by a ring of dark feathers….” I took a closer photo of the body shape to look at this sort of detail.
You can see the faint ring of feathers around the head and where the beak has hit the window. Also the tubby body and chest. I suppose the impression is made by grease and dust off the feathers.
The impression of the body did not seem to be full size, so this may have been a youngster which first flew at the end of April.
I had been sorting out some of my framed paintings and had left one out on the guest room bed. It was my single continuous line Barn Owl, which has a virtually identical composition to the window impression, with the sun shining through its wings. See also my Post of November 2015 about this owl.