Yesterday my daughter and I rounded a bend in the road and there standing infront of us looking at us with it’s huge angelic eyes was a fluffy tawny owl chick. It must have fallen out of it’s nest onto the road and was looking a little dazed.
Neither of us were owl experts but we knew that we should not just pick the owl up and assume it is abandoned. Many owl chicks are rescued un-necessarily by well meaning people such as ourselves when in fact if old enough and un-harmed by their fall, are able to climb back up the tree using their talons and the help of their parents. This owl however was still pretty young and was in great danger as it was on the road, and in the time it took for us to park up safely and get out of the car a Red Kite (large bird of prey common to the chilterns) swooped down hoping for an easy dinner. It was not going to survive for much longer!
Quickly my daughter took off her shirt and covered the baby owl which allowed her to bundle it into the car (she is much braver than me! I saw its talons!). This owl was very lucky because Tiggywinkles wildlife hospital at Haddenham in Buckinghamshire, was only a short drive away and within minutes the baby tawny owl was delivered to expert volunteers who were able to administer fluids vital to its survival. It has now joined a group of about 6 other rescued tawny owl babies and will be reared and then released back into the wild!
If you want to have a look at the wonderful work they are doing at Tiggywinkles go to www.tiggywinkles.com The public are not able to view the owl babies but they do have a lot of long term residents such as Red Kites, badgers, foxes, and of course orphaned baby hedgehogs, plus a visitor centre and museum where you can learn about british wildlife care. You can also donate or become a member and subscribe to their regular newsletters to hear about all their amazing work.
Where ever you live why don’t you go for a walk and see if you can see any birds nesting, look for the adult birds and watch them delivering food to their young. Be very careful to watch at a distance so as not to disturb them.