Great Gray Owl Hit By Car
Article Date: 2005-03-08 Source: http://www.channel3000.com
Madison, Wisconsin, U.S.A. - Migratory Birds Aren't Used To Traffic
Hundreds of bird watchers have been out searching for great gray owls, near
Goose Pond, Janesville, and near Stoughton in Lake Kegonsa Park.
Thousands of the big birds have swooped down from Canada into Minnesota and
Wisconsin. Birders in the Madison area are scanning the skies for a glimpse.
Rebecca Dubey has been on a different search mission.
"There had been reports that the owl looked injured (Monday) morning, I saw that
on the Internet," she said. "I came down to the ranger station and talked to the
rangers and they had also seen it (Monday) morning and thought it was injured."
She and her husband went looking for what might be an injured owl.
"I stopped in my tracks when I saw it because I was unsure that I was even going
to be able to find it -- it could have been anywhere up or down," she said.
The bird was captured by a federally licensed bird-handler and taken to the
Emergency Clinic for Animals in Madison, where doctors have seen a few great
grays before. (Note: Officials say people should not touch or try to capture
wild birds. If you see an injured bird, call state wildlife officials at (608)
"When the owl came in we were suspicious of head trauma because of the
difference in pupil size and some abrasions that we found on his body," said Dr.
They didn't find any broken bones but think it was hit by a car.
"This bird and many of the owls do fly very low to the ground," Kunitz said.
"This one I saw flying toward me about a foot off the ground and it becomes
quite invisible at that low altitude."
The owl is now doing well, doctors said, and is now in a rehabilitation
"He's brighter and more alert and more aware of his surroundings, versus being
more mentally dull when he first came in, more of a stunned condition," Kunitz
Unfortunately, it's common for the owls to be hit by cars, News 3 reported.
Many of the birds that that migrate from their northern locations aren't used to
cars, and will continue their hunting path even in harm's way.
The owls are here looking for food after the mice and mole population crashed in
Canada. Great Gray Owls can grow to be nearly 3 feet tall and are known for
their loud, low and descending, "Whooooo, woo, woo ... " according to
Disclaimer: This article has been reproduced from http://www.channel3000.com and placed here for comment.
OwlPages.com is not responsible for the accuracy of any information in this article, and does not necessarily agree with the author's opinions.
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