May’s Animal Of the Month

3 May

May’s Animal of the Month: Baby

Common Name: Barred Owl
Scientific Name: Strix varia
Sex: Female
Date of Birth: April or May of 2011

About Baby

Baby came to Blandford Nature Center in May of 2011 after falling from her nest about 40 feet. She was only a month or two old. After an examination we found that she had cataracts in both eyes, which is just a clouding that develops in the lens of the eye. While this cloudiness has somewhat cleared up, she would not be able to see well enough to capture prey and live in the wild.

Over time Wildlife Staff and volunteers began to develop a bond with the young Barred Owl. We would leave the cage open for her in the mornings before we opened so that she could learn how to fly. She would fly around the wildlife center and often land on the highest parts watching us sweep to make sure we did good job. Eventually she began landing on the Saw Whet Owl and the Kestrels cages, making them squeal in terror, so we had to leash her to a perch. Baby was always quite the character! I had a  toy that my cat didn’t play with so I brought it in and Baby loved it. She would keep it between her talons while she bounced around the wildlife center.

Baby when she first came into Blandford.

Baby around 3 or 4 months old with her favorite toy

Nowadays Baby is in her teenage years and really lets us have it. We are currently training her to behave on the glove while we handle her. She consistently will fly from her cage to my glove from about five feet away. Once trained she will be joining the other animals out on the wildlife trail in the old Barn Owl exhibit. Baby is often with us when we go out for programs and likes to show off for our visitors here at Blandford. She has a special trick where she will grab a dollar (she like larger denominations though 😉 ) from visitors and will drop it into a donation jar. She also likes to nibble on my fingers while I’m presenting when my hand gets a little to close to her while I speak. Crazy girl!

Baby on April 6, 2012 about a year old.

You can help us care for Baby!

This is a wildlife sanctuary that allows us to take in animals that do not have the necessary abilities to be able to survive in the wild on their own. Your sponsorship goes towards the feeding, cleaning, medication, and overall love and care we provide for our resident animals. By sponsoring Baby your name will appear on her outdoor cage for all the world to see! You are also invited to bring her toys (she likes things with feathers on them!). Click here to view the different sponsorship levels and to make your contribution or come on in and fill out a form and visit Baby in person!


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