Pip arrived in a cardboard box as a small item of fluff aged about 10 days. He was found on the main road at the bottom of Porlock Hill, with his dead sibling beside him, having fallen from a nest in a tall tree. He was too young to leave for the parents to care for, as he had not yet reached the 'branching out', lets discover things, stage, and had to be brought into care. Having done so it is difficult to rehabilitate a hand reared tawny owl as they have not been trained to hunt, and so we kept him here.
Like Caspar he too has been flown in our outside displays, and then brought into the Owl Show in the Barn in 2009. His flight pattern is slow and deliberate, from post to pounce, to catch his prey. His flights have become so much more interesting since being flown in the barn, and he really enjoys his very own, cautious, pounce technique. He is a very popular little guy.
Since then we have taken him outside to fly once again, and he is now much more engaged and willing to perform in the outside environment. We think he is more settled, less nervous, better bonded and so and happy to work with us now.
Tinka the Second: is also a rescued tawny owl, rehomed here after requiring a new home due to the result of confiscature by the Courts. He is probably quite an old owl, but has been well handled, and enjoys flying free in the field.
In the wild Tawny Owls live mainly in woodlands and wooded residential areas, and are generalist feeders preferring beetles, insects, small birds, small mammals and carrion on the roadside. Sadly many get hit by cars in country lanes. They catch their prey by waiting on a branch in total silence, then pouncing to the ground.
They nest in hollows in trees or walls, and protect their youngsters fiercely. Beware of nesting tawnies if you approach their young, as they aim straight for the eyes!
The video above is of 'Tinka the First' who was also a rescued Tawny Owl. Early one morning we went out to his aviary, and sadly found him with a broken leg!! We can only assume that the wild Tawnies had attacked him on the side of his aviary, and somehow he got his leg caught. He had a happy life, and we miss him. We hope he enjoyed his short time with us as much as we enjoyed his company!