It’s not what we feed the baby barn owl, it’s how. Volunteers at the Wildlife Education and Rehabilitation Center wrap the squirming, screaming little raptor in a towel “burrito-style”. This method keeps them safe from its sharp talons and allows one person to maintain control while feeding it pieces of rodents with forceps. It can sometimes be a messy process, and after feeding time is over, baby needs its face and beak washed up.
This barn owl came to WERC early this month after falling out of its nest in a palm tree. Now starting to grow feathers to replace the fluffy, white down, he has just been transferred to the enclosure housing Barnadette, WERC’s educational barn owl. This is Barnadette’s first time acting as a foster mother to a baby barn owl. Little Barney will soon be eating all by himself and fledging (learning to fly). In another month or so, he will be transferred to a large flight enclosure to exercise and perfect his flight before being released on a late summer evening.