A Great Grey Owl flies to freedom on Fox Mountain after being rehabilitated in Delta.

A Great Grey Owl flies to freedom on Fox Mountain after being rehabilitated in Delta.

Rescued owls free once again

Under overcast skies four owls were released Friday after recovering with the Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation (OWL) Society in Delta.

Under overcast skies four owls were released Friday near Williams Lake after recovering with the Orphaned Wildlife Rehabilitation (OWL) Society in Delta.

The owls — two Great Horned and two Great Greys — successfully landed on the branches of nearby trees on Fox Mountain as some of the people who rescued them initially witnessed their flying to freedom.

“We found one of the Great Greys part way up Fox Mountain Road on our way home on Jan. 24,” said Kim Rutherford as she and her son Daniel and his friend Mitchell Blusson watched. “It was just swaying in the wind so we stopped and picked it up and put it in the car with us.”

Local resident Willi Borsch rescued the other Great Grey along Highway 20.

“It flew into a car and broke its wing,” he said. “It was sitting on a concrete divide, the snow plow went by and it didn’t even move.”

Borsch’s Pablo Creek Road neighbour rescued another owl that is still recuperating.

“I saw him and his son sitting with the owl on Highway 20 and told them I’d get help. It was cold and dark and the owl had a broken wing and bleeding beak.”

As he watched his owl fly away he said it was really exciting.

Daryl Livingston has been volunteering with OWL for 19 years and transported the owls for the release.

The Great Horned Owls weren’t rescued in Williams Lake, and the Great Greys were probably just passing through, he explained.

“The Great Greys will migrate north of Prince George to the Peace from here,” he said. “They come down here in the Winter.”

One of the Great Greys actually sat on Livingston’s glove-covered arm for a few moments while he talked about the owls, whereas the Great Horned and the other Great Grey flew off as soon as the cages were opened.

“It’s been a busy year for owls,” Livingston said. “We had a record number in 2014 of 560 something and we’re on our way to another big year.”

They’ve never had four Great Greys before, he added.

Sue Burton who volunteers in the region for 2nd Chance Wildlife Shelter in Quesnel had organized the release and was there to help Livingston, taking her turn letting two of them go.

“I wanted to acknowledge the work of the shelter and veterinarian Dr. Doug Magnowski at the Animal Care Hospital in Williams Lake,” Burton said. “He got the two Great Grey Owls and gave them physical exams.”

As the Great Greys flew away, Livingston said they can spot a mouse from 70 to 80 feet away beneath three feet of snow.

“They fly with one ear up and one ear down,” he smiled, adding the ways of the wild are so interesting.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The next welding program being offered at Thompson Rivers University Williams Lake campus will be tuition-free thanks to federal funding. (Thompson Rivers University photo)
So you want to be a welder?

TRU Williams Lake offering tuition-free program

Pharmacist Barbara Violo arranges all the empty vials of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines that she has provided to customers at the Junction Chemist which is an independent pharmacy during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto, on Monday, April 19, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
B.C.’s 1st vaccine-induced blood clot case detected in Interior Health

Interior Health also recorded 52 new cases of COVID-19

Williams Lake RCMP are asking the public for assistance locating Marion Louise Billy. (Photo submitted)
Williams Lake RCMP seek woman wanted for theft, weapon possession

RCMP released the information Thursday, May 6

Audrey McKinnon was officially named the NDP nominee for the federal riding of Cariboo-Prince George. (Twitter)
Audrey McKinnon confirmed as Cariboo Prince-George federal NDP nominee

The nomination comes during speculation the federal government

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O’Connell photo)
VIDEO: Workers, activists clash at site of Vancouver Island logging operation

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Starting Tuesday, May 11, B.C. adults born in 1981 and earlier will be able to register for a vaccine dose. (Haley Ritchie/Black Press Media)
BC adults 40+ eligible to book COVID-19 vaccinations next week

Starting Tuesday, people born in 1981 and earlier will be able to schedule their inoculation against the virus

Parks Canada and Tla-o-qui-aht Tribal Parks dig the washed up Princess M out from sand along the south shore of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. (Nora O’Malley photo)
Rescue attempt costs man his boat off Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

Coast Guard response questioned after volunteer responder’s speedboat capsizes in heavy swells

Al Kowalko shows off the province’s first electric school bus, running kids to three elementary and two secondary schools on the West Shore. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
B.C.’s first electric school bus making the rounds in Victoria suburbs

No emissions, no fuel costs and less maintenance will offset the $750K upfront expense

Road sign on Highway 1 west of Hope warns drivers of COVID-19 essential travel road checks on the highways into the B.C. Interior. (Jessica Peters/Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. residents want travel checks at Alberta border, MLA says

Police road checks in place at highways out of Vancouver area

Victoria police say the photo they circulated of an alleged cat thief was actually a woman taking her own cat to the vet. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Photo of suspected cat thief released by Victoria police actually just woman with her pet

Police learned the she didn’t steal Penelope the cat, and was actually taking her cat to the vet

The Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Louis S. St-Laurent sails past a iceberg in Lancaster Sound, Friday, July 11, 2008. The federal government is expected to end nearly two years of mystery today and reveal its plan to build a new, long overdue heavy icebreaker for the Canadian Coast Guard. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver, Quebec shipyards to each get new heavy icebreaker, cost remains a mystery

Vancouver’s Seaspan Shipyards and Quebec-based Chantier Davie will each build an icebreaker for the coast guard

Most Read