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Barred owl becomes repeat visitor at PROWLS

Barred owl

LESSON LEARNED?: Powell River Orphaned Wildlife Society has been particularly busy with barred owls. One in particular, living around Penticton Street and Gordon Avenue, is even a repeat visitor.

Not that it’s keen on spending time at PROWLS but the bird wants to get at the cockatiel on the other side of a large, east-facing window.

The second time the owl hit the window, it knocked itself out and was put in a garbage bag while residents called PROWLS president Merrilee Prior. Even though the bag was soon standing up and rustling about, the barred owl had given itself a real injury; one eye was completely closed and both shoulders were badly bruised.

After two months of extended care at Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation Society in Delta, it returned to Powell River and was eager for release. With nesting season coming, perhaps this will distract him from the cockatiel.

However, a simple life does not seem to be his destiny. Shortly after its release, Merrilee received a call about an owl caught in a chimney in the same neighbourhood.

On her hands and knees, looking up the chimney, there it was, looking right at her. She stretched up, managing to shift the owl into grabbing position, and it was out, covered in soot.

Taken back to PROWLS for a bath, which it did not appreciate, and placed on a heating pad with a heat lamp above, it soon dried out. Fortunately, there were no injuries.

Placed in a flight cage outside to confirm its ability to fly, the owl struggled violently and escaped into the nearby trees. Maybe the new location will be a good thing and it will stop needing rescue.