SNN (ScrollingNetworkNews) ✿ ✿ Our Mel and Sydney returned to their nesting box with plenty of bonding occurring..but after 2.5 months of Sydney in the box from Dec 2013 to mid Feb 2014, the lack of prey gifts from Mel ( perhaps due to the severe and historic drought underway in California)and they have forgone the nesting process this year as many other raptors ✿ Compared to other owls of similar size, the Barn Owl has a much higher metabolic rate, requiring relatively more food. Pound for pound, Barn Owls consume more rodents – often regarded as pests by humans – than possibly any other creature. ✿ We remind viewers that sometimes owlets may not survive - the parents will dispose of things in "The Owl Way" -viewer discretion is advised, this is nature and the "Owl way". ✿ ~ ✿ “Animals, like us, are living souls. They are not things. They are not objects. Neither are they human. Yet they mourn. They love. They dance. They suffer. They know the peaks and chasms of being.” ― Gary Kowalski, The Souls of Animals ✿ Each species is a masterpiece, a creation assembled with extreme care and genius." ~ E.O. Wilson

Monday, November 28, 2011

Rescued great horned owl soars off to a new life..

The Quad-City Times, November 27, 2011
Jacob McCredie tumbled backward as the cage door opened part-way, and the inhabitant, a great horned owl, rushed out in a blur of wings.
The bird flew off toward the trees where Jacob and a friend had rescued it nearly two months earlier.
There was no Hollywood movie-like final meeting of eyes between boy and bird to say farewell or thank you, just a wild creature heading, finally, to the life it was born to experience.
Initially, the family thought the young bird had a damaged wing, but they later learned “the problem was that she’d probably left the nest too early,”

The McCredies drove to Iowa City and turned the owl over to Luke Hart of the Macbride Raptor Project raptor center. If the owl was to have any chance of living, Macbride was its best opportunity.
Hart figured the baby female might have been on the ground for as long as nine days.
Gradually, she gained weight and strength and was sent in late September to the Macbride Nature Recreation Area about 15 miles north of Iowa City. Birds there are prepared for release into the wild by spending time in a flight cage. The young owl learned how to fly properly in order to catch mice, squirrels and other forms of food. “Owls have to fly silently, so that’s something we look for in the flight cage facility,” Hart said.
Finally, the young bird was declared ready for release, and the McCredie family, accompanied by some of Jacob’s friends, drove to Iowa City to get her. Jacob held the owl before she was placed in a box for the trip back to Bettendorf  property and returned it to the wild.
The Raptor project releases about 45 percent of the birds that come into their clinic a testimony to the good work the raptor center does.

University of Iowa's Macbride Nature Recreation Area"flight cage."
It is the largest and most effective facility of its kind in Iowa.