While installing the traditional Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center in New York, workers were surprised to discover a little owl. The specimen, a small owl, was collected by a specialized center and will be released shortly.
It is one of the must-see attractions for Christmas in New York City. Each year, a huge Christmas tree decorated with thousands of illuminations is installed on the esplanade of Rockefeller Center, a shopping complex located in Manhattan. The tradition has been carried on since 1931 and attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors with each edition.
This year, a 23-meter common spruce top from Oneonta, New York, was chosen. He arrived in the Big Apple on November 14 after having traveled more than 250 kilometers from his homeland. But the specimen did not arrive alone. In its branches, the workers were surprised to find a little owl.
Christmas tree survivor
The anecdote was unveiled by the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center, the Saugerties-based association that collected the bird. The specialists were contacted on November 17 by a woman asking if they were looking after owls. She then explained that her husband was carrying an owl baby in a box.
“I asked where her husband had found her. She replied that he worked for the company responsible for transporting and installing the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree.“said Ellen Kalish, director and founder of the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center. on the official website. After retrieving the bird, she quickly realized it wasn’t a baby.
“All baby owls are born in the spring so the idea that it was a baby in November made no senseShe said. The specimen is actually a little owl (Aegolius acadicus) which is among the smallest species of owls in North America. So it wasn’t a young man but a mini adult.
“So far, so good“
After spending three days without eating or drinking, the 70-gram bird was sheltered, rehydrated and given a buffet of mice. “So far everything has been fine, his eyes are bright and his health seems relatively good considering everything he’s been through.Ellen Kalish continued in the post.
A more complete examination was performed and showed no fractures. The specimen named Rockefeller “will stay with us a few more days while we monitor his health and bring him back to a more suitable weight“, specified the association which launched fundraising in order to be able to continue its mission with wildlife.
The next step will be to wait for the right moment to give him back his freedom. But if the little owl and its large eyes have not had trouble capturing the hearts of Internet users, some have reacted strongly to the location of its reintroduction. Rockefeller is not going to be sent back to Oneonta.
Soon released nearby
The association chose to release him in a nearby forest, rather than exposing him to a new route “stressful“over 250 kilometers.”This is called a gentle reintroduction when we put food on a platform in times of hunger or an unsuccessful hunting night.“said Ellen Kalish at Live Science.
On social networks, many Internet users have criticized this initiative, calling for the owl to be brought back to its place of origin with its fellows. An option rejected by the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center which recalled that this raptor was a non-monogamous migratory bird that traveled alone and changed partners every year.
“So we don’t have to regret that he didn’t return to Oneonta where he was just passing by anyway. It was not his house“, said the association in a comment.”Just like Saugerties (where he will be released, editor’s note) will not be his home because he will continue to move“.
According to the latest news, the association plans to release Rockefeller on November 21 to continue his journey. As to how he got to New York in this tree, we don’t know. “He is the only one who knows his true story“Ellen Kalish told Live Science.
“We suspect he was tricked or surprised. It is also possible that it was in a cavity of the tree and no one noticed because these owls camouflage themselves very well.“She said. The anecdote may in any case be remembered. Especially since the Rockefeller tree has given rise to other jokes.
A tree “in the image of 2020”
Hardly arrived, the media as the Net surfers indeed noted that the giant plant was not very fresh. “Its low branches were bare, and its needles hung limply, as if the tree had just come out of the shower. He was hanging on his side, like he was unsteady on his trunk“, wrote the Washington Post.
On social networks, some did not hesitate to see this as an illustration of the current year. “Just like the year 2020, it looks like the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree tried to cut its own hair“one user joked on Twitter. “Rockefeller Center tree is an accurate representation of 2020“tweeted another internet user.
On the Rockefeller Center side, we were delighted with the arrival of the giant tree and we swept away the mockery. “You all have to look good after a two hour commute, right? Wait till I turn on my lights! See you on December 2!“, replied the center in a tweet.
Read also :
⋙ Owl or owl: how to tell them apart?
⋙ This rare bearded vulture observed in the sky of the United Kingdom is believed to have been born in the French Alps
⋙ In Russia, steppe eagles ruined scientists by sending … text messages