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

Friday, November 2, 2012

Great Horned Owl #12-2076

Admission Date: August 27, 2012 
Location of Rescue: Augusta County, Virginia 
Cause of Admission / Condition: Unknown 
Prognosis: Good 
Patient Status: Current Patient
On August 27, an adult Great Horned Owl was found on the ground in Augusta County. The owl’s rescuer captured the bird and brought it to the Wildlife Center that same day. Upon admission, Dr. Dana Tedesco, the Center’s veterinary intern, examined the owl. The bird was bright and alert and in good body condition, and had no visible injuries other than a few matted feathers on its right patagium [leading edge of the wing].

 Dr. Dana gave the owl subcutaneous fluids and scheduled blood work and radiographs for the following day. The next morning, the owl was found hock-sitting (back of legs known as hawks) in its enclosure, but was alert. No significant findings were noted on radiographs, but blood work revealed that the owl was anemic.

 Several other blood values were mildly elevated, suggesting muscle damage as a result of trauma, or a possible infection.
The staff continued to monitor the owl over the next few days before moving the owl to an outdoor enclosure. Additional blood work was performed in mid-September; the owl was still mildly anemic and had mild hyperproteinemia – high levels of protein in the blood.
Infection still could not be ruled out at this point, though the blood work did show improvements compared to the blood work taken at admission.

On October 15, blood work was performed again, this time everything was within normal limits. On October 17, the Great Horned Owl was moved to Flight Pen 6 –hopefully its final stop before release.

October 25, 2012 UPDATE
Great Horned Owl #12-2076 has been flying well over the past week -- while the owl is notoriously stubborn for the rehabilitation externs to exercise, the bird is capable of flying well. Rehabilitator Kelli assessed the owl's flight on the morning of October 25, and felt that the owl had good stamina, and was flying silently.
Live prey training -- "mouse school" --  began on October 25.

Look for the owl at night on the Critter Cam and you may see it catch live prey!