I drove down the Newell Highway to Melbourne around full moon earlier this month. There's a flat section around Jerilderie where in the past I've noticed barn owls sitting on the guideposts during the night. When I passed through about 60 kilometres from Jerilderie this time, during the day, I swear I saw a dead barn owl every ten or fifteen metres for a couple of kilometres. There would have been upwards of 60 or 70 of them. They all appeared to be fresh road-kill too. The crows were having a ball.
Does anyone know what was happening there? I gather that they swoop on the road as the lights from the traffic light up and scare the small animals. Maybe there are some truckies here who might know. There are mostly trucks moving on this highway at night, and I assume they'd account for most of the carnage in the owl population. When I was headed back the other way all that was left was their feathers - wings mostly.