Boobok Rain-bathing

Subject: Boobok Rain-bathing
From: Peter Milburn <>
Date: Mon, 23 May 2011 12:56:46 +1000
During the electricity blackout in O'Connor last evening, through the kitchen window I noticed a large bird in silhouette against the low clouds perched high in our Yellow Box tree. It was raising one wing and ruffling it feathers, alternating between sides. It was clearly bathing in the rain. I had a quick look at it illuminated with a hand torch through binoculars to confirm its identity as a Southern Boobok. It persisted in this behaviour for several minutes. Everyone in the family managed to see it.

I suppose that this is not uncommon but it is the first time that I have seen an owl bathing. Does anyone know about bathing behavior in owls?

Dr P.J Milburn
Technology Specialist
Australian Cancer Research Foundation Biomolecular Resource Facility
John Curtin School of Medical Research
Australian National University
GPO Box 334
Canberra ACT 0200
'Phone +61 2 6125 4326
FAX      +61 2 6125 9533

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