Dela is one of our more mature ladies at the Centre, and brought in as an adult has been with us for more than sixteen years. She is the epitome of a gentle owl, very calm and placid - all our visitors adore her. When flown outside she spends a lot of her time running along the ground - she has learnt that this is the best way to get her food, and entertains the visitors whilst doing so, therby expending very little energy, and gaining huge reward!!
Dela is flown in both the barn and in the outdoor flying arena, and is a vry popular £10 owl bird flying to your fist when you visit.
Sephooko joined our collection recently, and is a little less sure of himself, flying cautiously to the fist in the barn. He joined our collection in 2015 and is now maturing well into a steady flyer. He is used almost daily for flying to clients, and presents some most dramatic flights on a good day!
African spotted owls are found south of the Equator in Africa, in dry scrub savannah and woodland habitats. They are strictly nocturnal, resting by day in rocky areas and outcrops. They catch their prey with a post and long, low, glide approach, but also enjoy chasing insects by running on the ground, often spending hours at a time doing so, or hawking them in the air under streetlights.
These owls are very gentle birds, rarely showing aggression, even at the nest site, but puff out their feathers and wings into a huge ball, and scare predators away with their loud hissing call, and beak clicking.
They nest in the wild in a ground scrape usually, in a cave or at the foot of a tree. They will lay 3-5 eggs, which hatch successively after 32 days. The young owls are fledged by 7 weeks, but remain with their parents until 3 months of age, then leave to fend for themselves on the African plains.