The injured and weak snowy owl found supping on a downed seagull on Capitol Hill last month is strong enough to return to the wild and will be released Saturday morning at Volunteer Park.
Sarvey Wildlife Care Center, the organization caring for the owl since it was found unable to fly on 11th Ave in mid-November, announced the plan release. Details on the owl’s reintroduction into the wilds of Capitol Hill are below.
Earlier, CHS Aviary writer Melissa Koosmann told us a bit about the owl’s presence on Capitol Hill.
Snowy owls are more or less nomadic at this time of year. They probably base their movements on food availability, but biologists don’t fully understand how they make decisions about where to go, or when. They usually hang out in semi-wooded areas in Canada and the northern US, but they occasionally range as far south as Texas. I can tell you that this owl is likely a young one. Older owls stay in the arctic year-round, but the younger owls aren’t skilled enough hunters to live through the arctic winter.
The Seattle Times reported on the wintering birds — along with some great pictures — here.
The owl’s appearance coincided with another instance of an unusually wild creature coming to the attention of Capitol Hill residents. Fortunately, things have ended better for the owl.
Here’s the announcement from the non-profit Sarvey:
The snowy owl rescued in the Capitol Hill neighborhood will be released this Saturday, December 8th at 11:00 am Release location is Volunteer Park, 1247 – 15th Ave E, SeattleThe Sarvey Wildlife Care Center ambulance will be in the parking lot. Kestrel SkyHawk, SWCC Education Director will be releasing the owl and available for questions.This snowy owl captured the attention of the residents in Capitol Hill when it was discovered injured on the ground grasping its prey on 11/13/12. The snowy owl has recovered from its injuries and continues to gain endurance and put on weight. At intake the owl was emaciated. Original weight on 11/13 was 1.47kg, as of 11/27/12 the owl weighed 1.84 kg.