Quite an interesting month with which to start off the New Year in that we received a suspected poisoned Spotted Eagle Owl that was picked up sitting on the side of the road by Grant Martin, who was actually on his way to a business meeting in Puthaditjhaba in the early hours Friday 14/01.
The owl was brought to me and having had one look at the bird, I immediately rushed it to the Bethlehem Animal Hospital where the vet Wessels Strydom could check it over, treat it and hopefully pull it through to a full recovery. 26/01 news received from Wessels that the owl died in the evening on 25/01 from suspected kidney failure due to prolonged dehydration.
Whilst at the hospital receptionist, Michaela, asked if I would be able to take another fully recuperated and healthy “spotty” and release her somewhere convenient? Without any hesitation the owl was put in my specially adapted raptor transportation crate and loaded into the back of the bakkie. At home, we released her in Swartland (our neck of the woods) and she flew off perfectly settling on a roof top of a neighbour’s house until dusk when she flew off to find a more suited tree or perch from which to hunt.
On Tuesday 18/01 we received a call to remove a Puff Adder from a residence on The Ridge, but on arrival it was none other than a feisty adult Rinkhals! Quite incredible that the owners did not get spat at as these snakes will readily try to take you out if they’re in a confined space with nowhere to go. Wearing eye and face protection is essential as their aim is pretty accurate up to 3m distance…too close for comfort in our opinion!
On Friday 21/01 Prince and I did a Spotted Eagle-Owl nest box installation at 60 Collett Street.
We are looking for venues where we can go for walks and simultaneously learn about the natural resources in our midst. If you have a place we can visit or know of a venue, please give us a shout.