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Critter of the Week

Critters of the Week

A wild critter we spotted in the RVA area and a critter up for adoption by SPCA or RACC.

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If you like these photos be sure to give our Instagram and Dickie’s Backyard Bird Blind Bonanza on FB a follow. I try to follow ethical photography practices when photographing our wild critters. I use a long lens (hope to upgrade soon) and try not to disturb the animal. In this case, the owl was happily preening and very tolerant of me being nearby. The owl then flew into a nearby creek to bathe. It stopped splashing as soon as it spotted me, so I quickly took one shot then backed away. Just a little background on my methodology and know it is never my intention to disturb a bird or animal to get “the shot”.  Thanks, RWH

 

Where Spotted: Westover Hills near Nickel Bridge
Common Name: Barred Owl
Scientific Name: Strix varia
Length: 16.9-19.7 in (43-50 cm)
Weight: 16.6-37.0 oz (470-1050 g)
Wingspan: 39.0-43.3 in (99-110 cm)

Quick Facts (Cornell Lab)

  • The Great Horned Owl is the most serious predatory threat to the Barred Owl. Although the two species often live in the same areas, a Barred Owl will move to another part of its territory when a Great Horned Owl is nearby.
  • Pleistocene fossils of Barred Owls, at least 11,000 years old, have been dug up in Florida, Tennessee, and Ontario.
  • Barred Owls don’t migrate, and they don’t even move around very much. Of 158 birds that were banded and then found later, none had moved farther than 6 miles away.
  • Despite their generally sedentary nature, Barred Owls have recently expanded their range into the Pacific Northwest. There, they are displacing and hybridizing with Spotted Owls—their slightly smaller, less aggressive cousins—which are already threatened from habitat loss.
  • Young Barred Owls can climb trees by grasping the bark with their bill and talons, flapping their wings, and walking their way up the trunk.
  • The oldest recorded Barred Owl was at least 24 years, 1 month old. It was banded in Minnesota in 1986, and found dead, entangled in fishing gear, in the same state in 2010.

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Ruth at Richmond SPCA

Hi! My name is Ruth and I’m a cute, curious little lady looking for my place in this world and I hope that it’s with you! I love to play with toys and then have a cuddle session afterwards. I am quite silly and sure to keep you smiling with my antics. If you’re looking for a loving pal, call the Richmond SPCA adoption center to set up an appointment!

Age: 8 years,
Gender: Spayed Female
Color: Brown / White
Size: L (dog size guide)
ID: 45220237

Adopt Ruth at Richmond SPCA

Learn more about their adoption process.

To reduce visitor traffic, during the COVID-19 outbreak they are scheduling adoption appointments beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020. Please leave your phone number in a voicemail or email and an adoption counselor will call to set an appointment for you to meet with a pet. Email the adoption center or call 804-521-1307.

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Richard Hayes is the co-founder of RVAHub. When he isn't rounding up neighborhood news, he's likely watching soccer or chasing down the latest and greatest board game.

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Critter of the Week

Critters of the Week

A wild critter we spotted in the RVA area and a critter up for adoption by Richmond SPCA.

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Where Spotted: Pony Pasture
Common Name: White-tailed Deer
Scientific Name: Odocoileus virginianus
Weight: Males – 150 to 300 lb Females – 88 to 198 lb

Quick Facts

  • Bucks have antlers, not horns. Horns are permanent keratin structures found on cattle, sheep, etc. Antlers, one of the fastest-growing animal tissues in the world, are bones that drop off and regrow every year.
  • Deer eat 3-5% of their body weight per day.
  • Under optimum conditions, a deer population could double in size annually.
  • There may be twice as many deer in Virginia today – nearly 1 million – than when Jamestown was settled. White-tailed deer, nearly extinct in 1900, reproduce quickly and adapt well to human landscapes.
  • Deer have dichromatic (two-color) vision with blue and yellow primaries;[15] humans normally have trichromatic vision. Thus, deer poorly distinguish the oranges and reds that stand out so well to humans.
  • The 1942 Disney film adaptation of Bambi, famously changed Bambi’s species from the novel’s roe deer into a white-tailed deer.

If you’re a fan of original content like those photos above be sure to give our Instagram and Dickie’s Backyard Bird Blind Bonanza on FB a follow and consider making a donation.




Sonya Blade at Richmond SPCA

Good day to you! My name is Sonya Blade and I hope that you can help me with something… finding my fur-ever home! I know that once you meet me, you’ll be charmed by my great purr-sonality and adorable looks. Please consider making me a part of your family today!

Age: 1 year, 2 months
Gender: Spayed Female
Color: Grey / White
ID: 47628358

Adopt Sonya Blade at Richmond SPCA

Learn more about their adoption process.

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Critter of the Week

Critters of the Week

A wild critter we spotted in the RVA area and a critter up for adoption by Richmond SPCA.

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Where Spotted: Bryan Park
Common Name: Black-and-White Warbler
Scientific Name: Mniotilta varia
Length: 4.3-5.1 in (11-13 cm)
Weight: 0.3-0.5 oz (8-15 g)
Wingspan: 7.1-8.7 in (18-22 cm)

Quick Facts Courtesy of Cornell Lab

  • The Black-and-white Warbler is the only member of the genus Mniotilta. The genus name means “moss-plucking,” a reference to its habit of probing bark and moss for insects.
  • Black-and-white Warblers have an extra-long hind claw and heavier legs than other wood-warblers, which help them hold onto and move around on bark.
  • As warblers go, Black-and-white Warblers are combative: they’ll attack and fight with other species that enter their territory, including Black-capped Chickadees, Red-breasted Nuthatches, and American Redstarts. This aggressive behavior extends to the wintering grounds, where they defend territories and when feeding in mixed flocks will drive other Black-and-white Warblers away.
  • The oldest known Black-and-white Warbler was 11 years, 3 months old—a female that was banded in North Carolina in the 1950s and recovered in Pennsylvania more than a decade later.

If you’re a fan of original content like those photos above be sure to give our Instagram and Dickie’s Backyard Bird Blind Bonanza on FB a follow and consider making a donation.




Wheat Thin at Richmond SPCA

Wheat Thin is an adorable girl that is looking for just the right home and environment for her. If you’re interested in learning more about Wheat Thin, please contact the Richmond SPCA adoption center at 804-521-1307 to see if she is the one for you!

Age: 4 years, 10 months
Gender: Spayed Female
Color: Black / White
Size: XL (dog size guide)
ID: 45419238

Adopt Wheat Thin at Richmond SPCA

Learn more about their adoption process.

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Critter of the Week

Critters of the Week

A wild critter we spotted in the RVA area and a critter up for adoption by Richmond SPCA.

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Where Spotted: Canal Walk
Common Name: Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Scientific Name: Stelgidopteryx serripennis
Length: 4.7-5.9 in (12-15 cm)
Weight: 0.3-0.6 oz (10-18 g)
Wingspan: 10.6-11.8 in (27-30 cm)

Quick Facts Courtesy of Cornell Labs

  • The Northern Rough-winged Swallow gets its name from minuscule hooks on the leading edge of their primary feathers. Running a finger along the edge of the feather from base to the tip feels like touching a rough file.
  • The genus name of the Northern Rough-winged Swallow is Stelgidopteryx, which means “scraper wing”; the species name, serripennis, means “saw feather.”
  • Swallows are good fliers and that goes double for the Northern Rough-winged Swallow, which unlike most birds also molts some of its feathers while flying. It takes them around 100 days to finish growing new feathers.
  • The oldest recorded Northern Rough-winged Swallow was a male, and at least 5 years, 11 months old when he was recaptured and rereleased in California.

If you’re a fan of original content like those photos above be sure to give our Instagram and Dickie’s Backyard Bird Blind Bonanza on FB a follow and consider making a donation.




Proton at Richmond SPCA

Proton is a thoughtful girl that needs some time to become comfortable in new situations. The great news is that it does not take long and all she needs are some kind words and affection. She will ease into new friendships after this has taken place and will kindly purr and stick close to you. Please consider introducing yourself to this gentle hearted girl today, she would be forever devoted to you!

Age: 2 years, 2 months
Gender: Spayed Female
Color: Black / Orange
ID: 47707466

Adopt Proton at Richmond SPCA

Learn more about their adoption process.

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