The RSPCA are investigating after two tawny owlets were found in the boot of a car during a routine police check.
It is thought the baby owls are just a month old and were taken from the wild in Chew Valley lake near Bristol last week. It is not known where they were being taken or why.
The baby birds were handed over to the RSPCA by police and are now being cared for at West Hatch Wildlife Centre in Taunton
Both owls were uninjured and are in good health. But as they are so young and separated from their parents they need to be looked after until they are old enough to fend for themselves. They will then be released back into the wild.
Peter Venn, manager at West Hatch, said: “We have no idea what these owls were doing in the boot of the car but it is a shame they were taken away from their natural environment.
“It can be hard to successfully raise young animals like this away from their parents, and we always advise that people leave baby animals where they are where possible.
“However these two are getting along brilliantly, having a real hoot. They’re eating well and mixing with the other owls we have in our care.”
One of the biggest challenges faced by RSPCA wildlife centres every year is the number of baby animals brought to them for care. Often they would have a better chance of survival if left where they were.
Normally they are picked up by people with the best of intentions mistakenly thinking the animals have been abandoned or are in need of help. But as long as it is not hurt or in danger, the best thing to do with a tawny owlet found on the ground is put it at the bottom of the tree where its nest is. The little birds can actually climb trees by themselves.
Notes to editors
— Images and interviews available on request
RSPCA, Wilberforce Way, Southwater, Horsham, West Sussex RH13 9RS
Press office direct lines: 0300 123 0244/0288 Fax: 0303 123 0099
Duty press officer (evenings and weekends) Tel 08448 222888 and ask for pager number 828825
Email: email@example.com Website: www.rspca.org.uk
Want to raise money for the RSPCA every time you talk? Rabbit on with RSPCA Mobile! http://www.rspcamobile.co.uk/More Articles by RSPCA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) ...