Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Name the Screech Owl Contest

Posted by Kirk Mona
The Raptor Center at the University of Minnesota has a new Eastern Screech Owl education bird and they want your help naming it. If you think you have a good name for the little guy click on over to their website and enter your idea for a name in their contest. Education birds are important ambassadors to the animal world as they allow a wild bird to come in front of an audience so the public can understand them better.

There are two different kinds of education birds. Some are injured birds that cannot return to the wild. This is often a case of a broken wing or even a broken jaw like the Red-tailed Hawk I work with at the Lee & Rose Warner Nature Center. The other type of education bird is an imprinted bird. This is the case with the new Screech Owl you can name and is also the case with the American Kestrel I work with on outreach programs. Imprinted birds were taken from the nest or found when very young. Usually a well-meaning member of the public takes them in and tried to raise them instead of taking them to the raptor center or leaving them along like they should. The birds accidentally imprint on humans instead of their parents and basically never learn to be an adult bird. It is then our responsibility to take care of them for the rest of their lives.

Go name that owl and good luck!

~Kirk

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