When a barred owl sat in the middle of the road in Branford, Connecticut and refused to budge. For residents in the area, it was cause for concern as they had watched the owl grow up in the area over the past several years and had grown attached to the bird’s welfare.
Laura Burban, director of Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter, was equally eager to help the owl after receiving the call to come and help.
She wrote on the Dan Cosgrove Animal Shelter Facebook page, “Yesterday was a very exciting day for me! I’ve worked at the shelter for 15 years and never have helped on an Owl call! Typically my staff get to go on calls and I’m in the office but once I heard they had an Owl call, I was in!!!”
After arriving on the scene, Burban saw the owl spread his wings whenever a car or person approached, but he didn’t take off.
“I’ve always wanted to see one of these majestic beauties up close and know I was helping one,” she continued on Facebook. “This poor fella may have been bumped by a car because it doesn’t appear his wing was broken but it might have been bruised.”
She wanted to cover the owl with a towel before attempting to pick him up. Covering him would help reduce his stress but it would prove difficult because the owl could turn his head almost all the way around and stared directly at Burban. Burban’s fellow animal control officer tried to distract the bird, but eventually she was able to get the towel over him.
After that, they loaded the owl into their van and headed to A Place Called Hope, a wildlife rehabilitation center that specializes in birds.
It turned out the owl had a bad fractured wrist, Burban later told the Dodo.
During the time the owl was recovering, Burban She received a call from the town’s First Selectman Jamie Cosgrove, grandson of the shelter’s namesake.
“He said, ‘I’m calling about my owl! Everybody in the neighborhood has been asking about the owl, wondering if he’s gonna be okay.’,” she told the Dodo. “Everybody knows him. He’s sort of like a famous owl over there, like the mayor of the neighborhood.”
Thankfully, a few weeks after his rescue, the barred owl was ready to be released back into the wild. A Place Called Hope let Burban know that the owl would serendipitously be released on “Dan Cosgrove’s old property near his pond” she revealed. And Jamie Cosgrove would be the one to open the “the soft kennel of the owl to let him fly free.”
A Place Called Hope shared a video on Facebook which you can watch below:
Burban wrote, “This beautiful creature is now back on his home land ready to start the New Year off flying high and flying free ! Good luck beautiful bird!”