November 20th 2000, at approximately 10:30 p.m., I received
a Great Horned Owl. It was transported from just south of Coolidge
by DPS Officer B.C. Dunn. It was sitting in the road, dazed,
and he had almost run it over. Nocturnal predators will see
prey in the headlights of an on-coming vehicle and collide with
it as they swoop down for the kill. Often there are broken bones,
head trauma and internal injuries. Luckily, this magnificent
bird did not sustain any of these, but did bruise its wings
and beak. After a few weeks of cage rest, to allow the bruised
tissue to heal, and a few more in the flight pen to rebuild
strength, the owl was ready to return to the wild. Because it
is so near breeding season, it was in the best interests of
the bird to return it to its original territory. This meant
driving back down to Coolidge.
Officer Dunn knew the exact location, it was arranged to meet
and have him lead me to the site where he picked up the owl.
We also had to time it so that it was as close to dusk as
possible, yet still light. This allows the owl to orient and
acclimate naturally. Along ith his lovely wife and one of
Desert Cry’s volunteers, Officer Dunn and I said our
fare-thee-wells and experienced a thrill that does not happen
as often as we’d like. It is truly a privilege to care
for these creatures and be able to facilitate their return
to the wild.
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