I’ve been aware of the Powerful Owls that roost in Blackbutt Reserve for some time, but knowing they are there and seeing them are two different things. Today the mosquitoes were horrendous, I had sprayed with insect repellent but they were biting all of the spots I’d missed and surrounding us in buzzing clouds. We decided to just walk the path through the rainforest and then go somewhere in bug-free sun. When we came across him he was hugging the tree trunk, with branches in front of him, but we edged past to where the light was better and he followed us out along the branch and turned around.
Powerful Owls are Australia’s largest owl, with the male standing around 67cm. It’s a generalist hunter, preying on a range of species depending on what is available. The main prey is Ringtail Possum, but this may be supplemented by other arboreal possums, gliders and bats and occasionally birds such as magpies and currawongs. Ground dwelling mammals are rarely taken.
They are forest dwellers which rely on areas of old growth forests that contain mature, live, hollow bearing eucalypt trees that can be hundreds of years old.