Snowy the owl may be a stuffed animal, but her “adopted” babies give a hoot about her! After five tawny owl chicks were found orphaned, rescuers at the New Forest Otter, Owl, and Wildlife Park placed them with the cuddly toy to help the babies feel more comfortable. At first the chicks were afraid of the large white bird. But when animal manager John Crooks warmed Snowy on the radiator, the chicks crawled under her wings to take advantage of her “body heat.”
ALL GROWN UP After several months, the chicks were ready to leave the nest. What happened to dear old stuffed mom? “She was a bit messy from all the babies,” Crooks says. So Snowy took a trip of her own—to the washing machine!
Text by Sean McCollum
Photograph by Menno67, Dreamstime
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