08252016 Great Horned Owl

Location of Rescue: 
Whitley County
Admission Date: 
UPDATE: Today we celebrated the release of a Great Horn Owl back into the wild. In spite of the bitterly cold wind blowing across the fields, everyone was there. The folks at WANE TV News made the trek to Whitley County to film the event, the Conservation Officers involved in the rescue were there, and of course busload of volunteers from Soarin’ Hawk.

Great-horned Owl Rescue   082516GHOW

On Thursday evening a conservation officer in Whitley County was contacted about an owl that appeared injured and was walking along a driveway  a couple of miles south of South Whitley.  After contacting SHRR and receiving some instructions, he went to the location and found the owl walking in the driveway.  The drive way had a hedgerow on both side so he was able to force the bird toward the fence and pick it up.  Fortunately, the bird did not struggle or fight and the officer placed it in a large cardboard box. A Soarin Hawk volunteer met the CO at the Whitley county sheriff’s office to transfer the bird. With 2 sheriff deputies observing, the volunteer performed an initial examination of the owl.  (This was also a training session for the officers on how to handle a raptor).There were no apparent injuries but the bird was very emaciated. The bird was placed in a carrier and the CO’s box was returned for a future rescue.  The volunteer took the owl to Doctor Pat where it was ascertained that it was a first year bird and hadn’t eaten for a while. The owl was immediately rehydrated with Lactated ringers solution and then tube fed. By Friday morning the owl was gobbling down rodent pieces and chicks. The bird is now receiving TLC at another volunteer’s ICU facility.  It won’t be long before the bird is back in south west Whitley county.


This owl is doing great!  He is eating on his own and is very alert.  His prognosis for release is getting better!

08252016-GHOW Medical update: This bird was possibly hatched this spring and has gotten separated from his parents.  Great Horn Owls stay with their parents longer than most raptors...an amazing 210 days! It is hoped that with supportive care he will make it despite his very poor condition on arrival. He is being treated with fluids and tube feeding.

Update 1-29-201  This bird is almost ready for release!

He is recovering wonderfully! He is still in an ICU cage as we want him to gain more weight before he is moved to a flight pen.
His prognosis for release is very good!



How You Can Help

It's important to rescue, rehab, and share these birds with the community, and we thank our donors and volunteers for making it possible.
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