Marin Independent Journal
Marin Humane Society warns about the fake spider webs that people stretch across their yards, after one house in San Rafael snagged a live owl.
Marin animal care workers are warning about the dangers of sticky Halloween decorations after an owl was found caught in an artificial spider web in San Rafael.
The quarter-pound western screech owl was found alive by a resident Tuesday morning, caught in the strands of a fake greenish-white web strung from a tree in a yard on Riviera Drive in East San Rafael, said a spokeswoman for the Marin Humane Society.
A humane society officer transported the owl to WildCare in San Rafael, she said.
"It could have been worse if we weren't called out," she said. "We were able to respond quickly."
While the incident was unusual, there have been other instances of animals snagged by holiday decorations, said Melanie Piazza, director of animal care for WildCare.
"It's a lot more common than people realize," "They've had squirrels come in with Fourth of July banners wrapped around their tails and deer that have been stuck in Christmas lights."
The owl appeared to have been stuck in the web for several hours and was dehydrated, but was in otherwise good condition. WildCare treated the owl with intravenous fluids and planned to release it Friday night in the same yard where it was found. The family there has removed the fake spider web material.
As a reminder we urge people to keep birds and other animals in mind when hanging decorations outside.
"How many times have you walked through a spider web yourself and gotten it across your face and said,
'Oh my gosh, I didn't see that?'"