Thanks to the aluminum band encircling her lower leg, NWSO 10-669 (Northern Saw-whet Owl) helped tell us a bit about her story. After spending only 2 days with us last December to recover from mild head trauma, the owl was fitted with a USFWS band and returned to its recovery location in Shorewood, MN.
Now, after colliding with a window and breaking her right wing in Coon Rapids, the small owl once again was brought to TRC. Where did she spend her spring and summer? Did she migrate to northern latitudes or hang out in the metro area?
We only see about 5 banded birds each year and often they leave us with many intriguing questions. However, they also provide us with invaluable information on the perils they face, the effectiveness of rehabilitation techniques, and how their traditional movements and behaviors change in a dynamic world.
The two photos in this post are not of the individual mentioned, but rather pictures of the species for illustration. The first photo is very dark, but does show a band on the leg. The next photo is also of a Northern Saw-whet Owl.