Recently some friends took an injured Great Gray Owl to Badger Run, a wildlife rescue center in Klamath County.
Here are two photos of the injured owl taken by Mel Clements in the days just before the owl was hurt, perhaps by a predator, perhaps by being hit with car [a common cause of Great Gray Owl injury and death].
Here is Mel’s Facebook posting on the incident:
Yesterday was a sad day for owlers. This beautiful bird was discovered on a stump with an injured wing yesterday morning. (This photo was taken by me the day before – immediately after the owl made an unsuccessful attempt to catch a vole) Birding friends who discovered the injured owl had to spend some time before they located a rehab group who could assist in rescuing the owl. Badger Run Wildlife Rehab, 15993 Homestead Ln, Klamath Falls, OR 97601 was able to send volunteers to capture the bird and deliver it to a veterinarian. After an examination by the veterinarian it was decided the injury was too severe and this Great Gray Owl had to be euthanized. Badger Run Wildlife is a non-profit operated by non-paid volunteers. All birders and photographers should be aware of this wonderful organization and the work they perform. Visit their website or Facebook page to learn more about them. My donation to help keep them going is already in the mail.
Here is response from Badger Run:
We so appreciate the kind words from Mr. Clements. It broke our hearts that we were not able to save this magnificent owl. His wing injury was so severe that there was no way to repair the damage. We had no option, but a humane euthanasia. We’d like to thank the birders who found this owl after he was injured & got him help. These folks also stayed with him & waited for our volunteer to arrive. They also assisted in his safe capture. Although we were sad to lose him, it is a comfort that he did not have to suffer a slow, painful death in the wild.
Some of their rescued birds do go free again, others cannot fend for themselves. Here are some photos Shannon Rio took during a recent visit to Badger Run: