Tuesday, 26 June 2012

On my head, a burrowing owl

The burrowing owl in question was an "ambassador owl" and a member of the team of the Saskatchewan Burrowing Owl Interpretation Centre. I had stopped by there just as a group of school kids were about to be shown around the modest facility which houses about seven burrowing owls and a short eared owl. As it was sunny I donned my Tilley hat.
Burrowing owls are very small, scarcely bigger than a robin but have a defiant stare that makes them oddly cute, as well as appearing larger than they actually are. They are endangered, alas, hence the need for the centre. The staff member showed us the owls in their cages and told us about them and their plight.

 As a finale, we went into a building where the ambassador owl was brought in so we could get a really good look at her. She was a little restless often flying off on the leash attached to the keeper's arm.

The presentation over, the school kids trooped out and the keeper put the owl into her carrier for the short trip back to her enclosure. This involved taking off her leash whilst in her carrier. Being a bit fractious, she bolted out the carrier door and alighted the tallest object in the room which was my head!

Thankfully, I was still wearing my Tilley hat so I didn't suffer her talons. I stayed very still and tried to remain as calm as possible as the keeper returned the bird to its carrier! Alas, I have no photos of that incident.

No comments: