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One night on my exchange year in the US I couldn't sleep so I went out to shoot some hoops around midnight. I was on the court, alone, when this ghostly white Barn Owl flew right over me; it was pretty amazing, but even more so because its flight was totally silent - their feathers are specially adapted to dampen any sound.

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I live next to a big country park and regularly get them in the back Garden. We have Foxes, Rabbits, Squirrels Owls, the odd hawk and a few other animals that get into the garden during the summer.

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I live next to a big country park and regularly get them in the back Garden. We have Foxes, Rabbits, Squirrels Owls, the odd hawk and a few other animals that get into the garden during the summer.

 

 

o_rly.jpg

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great thread.

 

we live about fifteen minutes from this owl/bird sanctuary...

 

Welcome to O.W.L.

 

i've been a couple of times to visit the owls/raptors. it's good to see people taking care and interest in these amazing animals.

 

some of my favorite inhabitants...

 

sampson.jpg

 

"Both Sampson and Delilah suffered auto accidents. Sampson has a damaged wing and in May of 1999 his wing was amputated at the metacarpals. Delilah has lost sight in her right eye, and sometimes gets weepy".

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Snoopy came to OWL in April 2007. He was found in a parking lot in Richmond emaciated and with head trauma. When he was examined, Snoopy had some swelling in his abdomen and problems with his vision. He also didn't seem very coherent. After a year in careful care, it was evident that the head trauma had caused brain damage that would prevent his release.

 

snoopy.jpg

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Sarah came to O.W.L. as a gift from Pacific Northwest Raptors in Duncan BC, after long-time resident Oddey passed away in May. She arrived at O.W.L. on June 18th, 2007. Sarah was born and bred in captivity, so that means she was accustomed to humans (imprinted) from an early age. Unfortunately, she will not be released as she has a dependency on humans meaning she looks to humans for food and shelter.

 

sarah3.jpg

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i think i'm going to sponsor these three...

 

snowies.jpg

 

Snowy Owls

 

Piggy

Piggy is a Snowy Owl. He was hit by a plane at Vancouver Airport in November of 1992 and suffered a broken wing, with the break being near the joint. He now has a callous build up around the break, which prevents him from flying properly. Piggy was a juvenile when he came to us and we initially thought that he was a female because he had the characteristics of a female with black markings all over him.

 

Originally we had a male snowy with Piggy but he was eventually released. Once he was gone Piggy stopped eating.

 

First, we tried mirrors on the advice of Kay McKeever, who is a renowned rehabber in Ontario, to stimulate the presence of another owl. Then we cut the ears and tails off dead mice to make them resemble lemmings without any success. We borrowed another Snowy, much to the chagrin of the female he had been with to see if this would help. Finally we left Piggy on his own to see if he would decide to eat. Kay said we could safely leave him without food, as he was a good weight. On the eighth day he actually moved a mouse, on the ninth, he ate the head, and after that there was no stopping him - he has been living up to his name ever since.

 

Kermit

Kermit was hit by a car in November of 1991 in Sarnia, Ontario. He was then taken to Kay McKeever. Kay had him until February of 1995 and then sent him on to us.

 

Serenity

Serenity was found in Delta by the Boundary Bay Airport with an injury to her wing. She had collided with an airplane, resulting in a damaged wing tip. After she arrived at OWL she went to the vets and they decided to amputate her wing at the wrist joint.

 

 

Facts

- is the heaviest and most powerful of all the owls in North America

- 20-27 inches long and has an average wingspan of 5 feet

- weight approximately 4 pounds

- can live at least 9-10 years in the wild and 35 years in captivity

- mainly located in the polar regions

- snowies winter south, from the arctic coast to the southern Canadian provinces, sometimes but irregularly as far south as California

- they nest on the ground north of the tree line

- do not hunt near nest sites, so other birds often nest nearby to take advantage of the owls driving off predators

- are active day and night

- mainly eat mice and lemmings, will also eat gulls and waterfowl, known to wade in and catch fish and small marine animals

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