Eurasian Scops Owl - Otus scops

In the evening of 17 May 1998 Erik van Winden heard a sound at the lower part of a river dike and thought it was some unknown amphibian. Five days later at the same location Olaf van Hoorn heard the same sound, but - since he just returned from a holiday in Greece - he recognized the sound of a Scops Owl Otus scops! He warned other birders so the next weeks everybody had the opportunity to twitch this bird, although a few were lucky enough to see it and then only as a vague shadow. The bird hold territory till at least 11 June. No photographs were taken, but a lot of sound recordings. For me it was a break in a unique series, since from 13 June 1987 (Franklinīs Gull) till 9 May 1998 (Green-winged Teal) all my new species in the Netherlands were photographed. In May 2010 a bird stayed at Kootwijkerbroek Gld which could be seen at dusk and with an infrared binoculair and was photographed very often.

Sound recording is taken by © Magnus Robb on June 1st 1998.

26 May 2010, Kootwijkerveld Gld; © Cock Reijnders.

This record was only the 6th record for the Netherlands and the first one calling and of course, the first one twitchable! The last record was in May 1970. Previous records were on 8 September 1890, end of March 1906, 26 May 1958, 7 June 1967 and around 12 May 1970 (cf Dutch Birding 18 (4): 166, 182-183, 1996 and Dutch Birding 20 (3): 143-144, 1998).

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