20. Sticky Situation
One day a cute little screech owl decided to leave its nest to search for some food but he found himself in a rather sticky situation that he couldn’t escape with ease. Click next to see what happened!
19. It’s A Trap!
The screech owl found himself trapped when he accidentally landed in a glue trap… he was stuck and desperate for help as he couldn’t move his wings and open his mouth.
18. He Couldn’t Escape
The little bird in its effort to escape the trap started flapping his wings and trying to unstick itself of the glue with his mouth. Little did it know that this only made his situation worse. He couldn’t fly away… until something happened!
17. Someone Saw Him
Thankfully the eye of a local resident caught the owl. When she saw the little bird desperately trying to escape its trap she didn’t waste a second. She immediately called for expert help.
16. The Rescue
Within minutes Coutrney Gerspacher, lead animal care technician at Florida Wildlife Hospital arrived to rescue the owl and take it with him in the hospital as it was covered in glue and couldn’t move a wing. “She wasn’t the one who put out the glue trap, but she did find the owl in it.”, Courtney said about the woman that found the owl.
15. Covered In Glue
“He did not look too good when he first came in,” Gerspacher said. “He was definitely very, very sticky, and you could tell that he’d tried to preen himself and clean off his feathers because his mouth was covered in glue, his head was covered in glue and he couldn’t even open his feet — they were so tacky.”
14. It Wasn’t Injured!
Fortunately the little didn’t hurt itself while trapped, as animals tend to do anything to escape their traps once caught.
“Luckily, he hadn’t broken anything, and there weren’t any visible skin tears,” Gerspacher said. “A lot of times when animals are stuck in glue traps, they will pull so hard, they will literally break their own bones trying to get free. So he didn’t look too bad … but he didn’t look happy.”
13. Time For A Bath
As Courtney removed as much of the glue that it was possible at the time, she decided to give the little owl a bath. The little own though didn’t seem to like the idea.
12. The Bath
Rescuers tend to be extremely careful when it’s time to clean trapped animals mostly because of the danger of infection. For the glue to come out Courtney had to use several kinds of oils in order to dissolve the glue while not hurting the owl.
“We start off with an oil bath,” Gerspacher said. “The easiest way to get that tacky substance off of their feathers or skin is to use oil … vegetable oil, canola oil. We use that, avoiding their eyes, of course, and just soak the bird, and work that oil into their feathers.”
11. He Felt Better Afterwards
After its oil bath the owl had to endure another bath with dishsoap and plenty of water. The owl didn’t seem to enjoy it but surely felt more free and relieved after the bath
10. Slowly Recovering
“After his first bath, he was able to move his feet,” Gerspacher said. “He was no longer lying down, and he was a bit feistier. We also rehydrated him and gave him something to eat.”
9. Some Baths More Please
For the course of the next week the owl had to be given a lot of baths until every bit of the glue was removed. Glue traps use a specific kind of superglue that doesn’t come off easily and requires special care and multiple session to remove.
“Usually one bath does not do it because they have so much oil,” Gerspacher said. “So it’s a very long process.”
8. It Was Worth It!
After a week or so the little bird was almost completely recovered! Rescuers decided to put the owl into an outdoor encolure where it could have its own space to practice his flying once again!
7. Flying Once Again
“He did lose a couple of flight feathers, but he proved to us that he was able to fly out in the screen owl cage and catch live prey,” Gerspacher said.
6. Final Tests
The rescuers wanted to make sure that the owl will be completely ready to be released into the wild again. They tested if it could fly on its max speed as well as catch some prey.
5. Finally Free
At the beginning of the week and after the rescuers made really sure that the owl will be alright, they decided to release it back into the wild in a location, very close to the place he was found trapped.
4. Glue Traps
The Florida Wildlife Hospital moved by this incident decided to release a statement in order to raise awareness about glue traps as well as other traps that can harm wild animals. Also they told the local community to report any traps found to them.
3. He Was Lucky
After all the little screech owl was extremely lucky to be alive. If it wasn’t for a random stranger the little owl would have almost zero chances of survival.
2. A Matter That Affects Everyone
As species, people have to respect other life and try out best to protect it from people who clearly don’t have the intentions to do it. We hope that more and more people follow the Florida Wildlife Hospital’s guidelines and caution alerts.
1. Happy Ending
“It’s amazing, because a lot of times you don’t always get a happy ending,” Gerspacher said. “It’s literally a miracle that that owl made it.”