In 2011 and 201 2 two breedings by a pair of Eurasian eagle owls were observed in an old white-tailed eagles’ nest at Blatná Polianka in the Senianske rybníky SPA. The nest was situated in a grey poplar tree 1 5-20 m above the ground in a treebuffer by the rivulet Okna, in open lowland landscape without woodland, just with linear tree vegetation and scattered trees. In 2011 incubation of the clutch was observed and the female was present in the nest even at the end ofApril, when the fledglings were probably already present in the nest, but no more data on their further success were obtained. In 201 2 the pair of Eurasian eagle owls bred in the same nest again, but in May the nest was already abandoned and we suppose predation of the clutch, probably by ravens. This occasion is the third known breeding attempt by the Eurasian eagle owl in a raptor nest built in a tree, and the first known occasion of breeding in a white-tailed eagles’ nest in Slovakia. The obtained data also document the further spreading of the species in the Dolný Zemplín region into unusual habitats of a lowland agricultural landscape with very few trees.
The Ural owl (Strix uralensis) is considered to be a habitat specialist preferring structurally heterogeneous old montane forests in Central Europe. Unlike the sympatric tawny owl (Strix aluco), the Ural owl is negatively affected by human activities in its forest habitats and usually avoids human settlements. Although the young birds and wintering adults show no strong dependence on the size of forest patches and their structure, there are only a few studies on the occurrence of this owl species in non-forest and urban habitats. Here we describe several observations of wintering Ural owls in south-eastern and south-western Slovakia outside the forests during the winter 2017/2018. The Ural owls were recorded in agricultural country, but not infrequently also in human settlements.