Two road closures, one tree down, and a two-car smash-up that closed most lanes on I-85. All while inhaling the delightful smell of animal poop, wafting from the rear of the van. It was worth it.
CRC is very successful in returning injured raptors to the wild after they are treated for their injuries and rehabilitated. There are always some, however, that just can’t be released.
Kerby, a Barred Owl (Strix varia), was brought to CRC as an orphan who learned to associate humans with food. If Kerby was released, it’s likely that the owl would seek out humans for food, rather than learning to hunt properly. Animals that beg food from humans have a very high chance of being injured or killed in collisions with cars or other human activity. Here’s a video of Kerby “food begging”:
Styx is a 1 year old red-phase Eastern Screech Owl (Megascops asio) with major feather damage and missing a talon. Styx was deemed non-releasable because of the amount of noise the bird’s wings make while flying. After a year with CRC, the reason for the noise was never discovered, but since owls need to be nearly silent in flight in order to catch their prey, Styx would not be able to be returned to the wild.
Kerby and Styx will make their public debuts once they are cleared from quarantine.