A tiny, dehydrated owl is discovered in the Christmas tree at the Rockefeller Center has occupied the attention of all worldwide. While the charismas tree was being erected in New York’s Times Square, this tiny owl was found within the branches of the 2020 tree.
The owl was rescued immediately and now kept in the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center for treatment and care. They shared this at the “rare holiday story”. This is a northern saw-whet owl, which traveled 170 miles from Oneonta in upstate New York. It mistakenly stayed on the branch of the 75-foot Norway spruce that was transporting by the workers.
The director and founder of Ravensbeard, Ellen Kalish shared the experience on Facebook how she came to get the owl. In her statement, she wrote “I received a phone call from someone who asked if we take in owls for rehabilitation. I replied, ‘yes we do,’ there was silence for a moment and she said ‘OK, I’ll call back when my husband comes home, he’s got the baby owl in a box tucked in for the long ride.’ I asked where her husband was when he found the owl. She said he works for the company that transports and secures the Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center.”
She also added, “She lived about an hour south so we met in the middle to do the transfer. Once secured, I peeked in the box and saw this little face looking up at me. He/she was a little Saw-whet owl, the smallest owls we have in the northeast. All baby owls are born in the spring so the idea that there was a baby owl in November didn’t make sense.”
After three days without food or water, this tiny owl was dehydrated and malnourished. The Ravensbeard staff made sure he got fluids and “all the mice he will eat” to become fit. As per them, “His eyes are bright and seem relatively in good condition with all he’s been through. Once he checks in with the vet and gets a clean bill of health, he’ll be released to continue on his wild and wonderful journey.”
Once the story of this owl is gone viral worldwide, the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center has informed that they will provide an update for everyone as to the owl’s progress and their next step. They wrote in their statement, “We noticed the shared concern for the owl to be returned to where he came from in Oneonta, NY and would like to address this. Saw-whet owls find a new mate every year and are resilient in finding safe places. This owl is a full-grown adult and is very capable of finding new territory”.
They also added, “We believe it would be even more traumatic to transport him yet again when he can be safely released here on the grounds of Ravensbeard Wildlife Center where there are acres of trees to choose from.” They showed the perfect process for constructing an owl box to provide a safe home for these precious creatures. The nest box building method for other species of owl is also depicted there.