Meet an Owl at the Lake Cabin & Home Show

March 28, 2008 10:00:49 AM PDT
If you're suffering from cabin fever, you might find a cure for it at the Lake Home & Cabin Show this weekend at the Schaumburg Convention Center. Even if you don't own a lake home or cabin, you'll find plenty of ideas for landscaping, decorating and entertaining. If you are

in the market for a second home, the show offers more than 175 exhibitors showcasing everything you need or want for your lake home or cabin.

Exhibits include furnishings, furniture and décor, real estate, builders, remodelers, architects, finance, recreational products, landscaping and lakeshore products and services, unique accessories and a host of other items specific to the lake home and cabin lifestyle.

The show opens today, Friday, March 28 and runs through Sunday, March 30. For information, visit www.lakehomeandcabinshow.com or call (952) 471-1192

If you just want to get out of the house for a few hours, there are plenty of family-friendly exhibits and demonstrations as well:

"All About Owls"
Presented by The Raptor Center, St. Paul, Minn.
Rarely seen and seldom heard, these great raptors of the forests and fields are one of nature's most proficient nocturnal predators. Guests can get to know the most common owl species found throughout lake home and cabin country and learn about their fascinating cycle of life. See several live owl species up close, plus take in a special owls-only performance offered twice each day on the Cabin Life Stage. Show times are 4 and 7 p.m. Friday, 1 and 5 p.m. Saturday and noon and 2 p.m. Sunday.

"Cabin-Quick Hors d'oeuvres"
Presented by Frontier Cabinetry and featuring Chef Patrick Moore

They came for dinner ? but they'll remember your hors d'oeuvres! Learn new quick and exciting ways to turn the cocktail hour into a gourmet moment at the lake home this summer. Let expert chef Patrick Moore, of Brule, WI share his samples and his secrets for fantastic finger food. The "Cabin-Quick Hors d'oeuvres" Stage features a fully-equipped kitchen and custom cabinets constructed by Frontier Cabinets. This is a "must stop" at the Lake Home & Cabin Show.

"LoonWatch"
Presented by the Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute at Northland College, Ashland, WI

There is nothing more "northern" than the haunting cry of the Common Loon. Our 10-pound guests arrive in mid-to-late April and leave again in early September. They provide an awesome sight and sound at our lake homes and cabins? but they crave their freedom and space. Loons and loon music are unfortunately disappearing from some of their traditional nesting lakes due to air and water pollution, shoreline development and increasing recreational activities. But, there is much that we can do to protect them. You can learn about loons and the "LoonWatch" program through this special feature at the show. Plus, take part in a fun and interactive Loon Calling Contest to be held at the show!

"Pin My Cabin!"
Presented by Naterra Land

Okay all you lake home and cabin owners ? here's your chance to meet your neighbors! Step up to the huge lake country map and "pin" the location of your cabin. The fun starts on Friday and by Sunday the map will become a tribute to the popularity of the lake home and cabin lifestyle. Special prizes will be given away each day and other entertaining activities will be happening ? all at "Pin My Cabin."

The Cabin Life Seminar Stage
Presented by Cabin Life Magazine

A rustic porch is the perfect setting for guests to enjoy unique and informational seminars, demonstrations and activities happening every hour at the "Cabin Life Stage." The complete schedule of events is posted on our web site and at the show entrance and Cabin Life Stage.

2007 Cabin Life Photo Contest Winners
Presented by Cabin Life Magazine

See the winning entries and many of the "honorable mention" shots in this special PowerPoint display located adjacent to the Cabin Life Booth. The 2007 Photo Contest drew hundreds of contestants and you can get information on the 2008 Photo Contest at the display.

LAKE CABIN AND HOME SHOW
Friday, March 28 2 p.m. ? 9 p.m.
Saturday, March 29 10 a.m. ? 8 p.m.
Sunday, March 30 10 a.m. ? 4 p.m.

Schaumburg Convention Center
1551 Thoreau Drive
Schaumburg
(952) 471-1192
www.lakehomeandcabinshow.com

ADMISSION: Adult -- $12; Youth 5-15 -- $5; children under 5 are FREE

LEARN ALL ABOUT OWLS

You can meet Great Horned Owls (GHOW) at Lake Cabin & Home show and learn all about them from naturalists from The Raptor Center in St. Paul, Minnesota http://www.raptor.cvm.umn.edu/ Established in 1974, The Raptor Center specializes in the medical care, rehabilitation, and conservation of eagles, hawks, owls, and falcons. In addition to treating approximately 800 birds a year, the internationally known program reaches more than 240,000 people each year through public education programs and events, provides training in raptor medicine and surgery for veterinarians from around the world, and identifies emerging issues related to raptor health and populations. The majority of its funding comes from private donations.

How much do you know about owls?
· The Great Horned owl is the heaviest Midwestern owl, weighing up to 3.5lb
· Females are typically larger than males
· Up to 5ft. wingspan
· Two feet from tip of tail to top of head feathers
· Found in North and South America in wooded habitats, swamps, deserts, rocky areas, farmland and urban areas
· In urban areas, usually nests in wood lots adjacent to open area or sparsely wooded areas
· Owls do not build their own nest, some use tree cavities, Great Horned Owls often take over someone else's nest, often a Red-tailed Hawk or Squirrel's nest
· Less than 50% of owls hatched survive to maturity.
· Great Horned Owls can live to be 10-15 years old
· Great Horned Owls are one of the earliest nesting birds in the Midwest
· They search for a nest and begin courtship in Dec/Jan
· Start egg laying in Feb
· Chicks can be hatching by March (brrrrr?..)
· Typically 1-3 chicks in clutch
· After hatching the chicks are cared for by the parents for up to 5 months.
· Great Horned Owls are nicknamed the "tiger of the sky" because of their skill in hunting
· Like all owls, they are strictly meat eating birds (no fruits, veggies, or grains) that catch their food with their feet
· Great Horned Owls are opportunistic owls hunting a wide variety of prey species; mice, voles, rats, shrews, snakes, birds, rabbits, skunks, frogs, etc?
· They use their amazing eyesight (faster w/ greater light sensitivity) and hearing (ears are asymmetrical) to find their prey in low light conditions
· Raptors can turn their heads 270 degrees in either direction-mammals have 7 neck vertebrae connected together in two spots, owls have 14 vertebrae connected in one spot
· Owls have special feather structures that allow them to fly silently while pursuing prey
· Coloration of Great Horned Owls varies depending on original habitat

More about the Great Horned Owl

Because Great Horned owl chicks grow rapidly and are often in small nests the chicks sometimes fall or are blown to the ground. Typically the parents will still feed and protect the chicks while they are on the ground. In urban areas these chicks are sometimes picked up by people attempting to "rescue" them. It is illegal to possess a raptor without a federal permit. If you see an owl chick on the ground, leave it there and call your local rehabilitation organization. If it is in danger of being harmed by a dog or people set it in a lower branch and call a rehabber. Great Horned owls are wonderful parents and you may not see them but they are there. If you know of someone who has "rescued" an owl be sure to get it to a rehabber right away. A young owl must learn hunting and behaviors from their own species.

Owls are top predators that indicate the health of the environment they inhabit. There are over a dozen types of owls in the Midwest. Each has a special habitat and hunting style. By observing owls we can gauge the health of our wild spaces. Many of these owls are urban nesters. To discover what owl lives in your neighborhood listen! Each species has its own distinct call. March and April are a great time to discover which owls are out there as they are using territorial call to establish their nesting areas.

As predators, owls are an important part of the food chain. Adult Great Horned owls can eat 5 mice a night and growing chicks can eat 10 a day. One family of Great Horned owls can consume 40 mice a night! This "balance" is important for the health of both predators and prey. After one year, two mice, without predators and a never-ending food source would result in a million mice!

If you'd like to see live owls and learn about who may be in your backyard stop by the Lake Home and Cabin Show!

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