It’s Official! 2021 Barred Owl Chicks Named ‘Pignut’ and ‘Hickory’

May 3, 2021
Barred Owl chicks

Barred Owl cam host and Wild Birds Unlimited President and CEO Jim Carpenter has combed through the name suggestions for the 2021 owlets, and the official names for this season’s nestlings are “Pignut” and “Hickory.”

Thanks to the nearly 3600 participants that suggested names for the owlets. We will be in touch with our prize winners soon. We hope you enjoy watching Pignut and Hickory as they continue their development in the nest box for the next couple of weeks before they head out into the surrounding forest.

See Jim’s note below for insight into the selection process:

“Wow, thanks everyone for all your name suggestions – 3600 in all! I actually did look at every single entry, and I have to say they were all very clever, funny, and inspiring. There were the classic “owl” names such as Owliver & Owlivia; every duo name from history, politics, movies, and TV (such as Lucy & Ricky); Native American names such as Koko (Algonquin for “the night”) & Opa  (Choctaw for “owl”); vaccine related names such as Moderna & Pfizer; names of attributes that helped us through the pandemic such as Ingenuity & Perseverance; names inspired by nature such as Snow & Frost; and just plain cute names such as Bob & Weave and Cutie & Sunshine. 

I was thinking I would follow-up on last year’s names of Joy, Kindness & Hope with another pandemic-related name having to do with how we got through the last year or attributes or actions that would help us go forward. 

But, in the end, I saw this suggestion and it just grabbed me as being very original, very cute, and very relevant. These two owlets will be named this year, Pignut & Hickory!

The owl box is attached to an 85-foot pignut hickory, a very strong and stately native tree that is not only providing a home for these birds but is also feeding birds, squirrels, and many other animals with its abundant hickory nuts. It is also host to many egg-laying moths and butterflies, which provide the insect larvae needed for most all baby birds right after they hatch. 

Native trees, bushes, vines, and flowers are the key to the survival of birds going forward so let’s enjoy watching Pignut (the smaller owlet) & Hickory these next 2 weeks until they fledge. Hopefully these cute little owlets will inspire us to preserve and create habitats for the birds and all other wildlife. 

We will draw names for the winners of the other 9 copies of my book, The Joy of Bird Feeding.

Thanks everyone for your entries and for watching Mama, Papa, Pignut & Hickory this year!”

– Jim Carpenter, President and CEO, Wild Birds Unlimited

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