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Thread: The owl and the lion

  1. #1
    Elite Member Honey's Avatar
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    Dec 2006

    Default The owl and the lion

    His mother must have been filling his head with stories of runcible spoons and pea green boats.
    Why else would a tiny owl flutter right up to a great big pussycat for a chat?
    Onlookers feared the worst as female Asiatic lion Indu eyed the surprise visitor. And they were stunned when the little owl appeared to be brazenly demanding food from the King of the Jungle.

    Twit-twoooooh! The brave baby owl chick fell into an enclosure at Paignton Zoo with Indu the lion and survived for three days before being able to fly off

    Luckily for the tiny creature, Indu did not show any interest in her unusual guest.
    The owl - who had not yet learned to fly - then spent three days in the enclosure near seven-year-old Indu and her mate Mwamba.
    Amazingly she survived and, after several clumsy efforts, eventually managed to take off and fly to safety.
    The incredible pictures were taken by retired teacher Sheila Hassanein, 64, who was visiting Paignton Zoo in Devon.
    Mrs Hassanein said: 'Someone saw the chick fall out of a tree and it landed right in the lion enclosure. A big group of people quickly gathered round to watch.
    'We were all very concerned about the owl as it looks completely helpless in there. It was so tiny compared to the lions.
    'At one point one of the lions went over to it and I felt sure she was going to eat it, but she just didn't seem bothered at all.

    (Huge) paws for thought: The baby owl seems to be demanding food from the huge lionness, and may not have realised it was in grave danger. Indu peered at the fluffy owlet it for a while but then lost interest

    'The staff couldn't go in there to remove the chick so it was in there for three days before it was able to fly off.
    'It was very lucky to escape because I saw a pigeon land in there once and the lion ate it up straight away.'
    A zoo spokesman said visitors were keen for the owlet to be rescued but staff could not allow anyone to enter while the cats were in the paddock.
    He said: 'Tawny owls are common and Asiatic lions are endangered but in this picture it's the tawny owlet that looks to be facing extinction as the lion is a deadly carnivore.
    'Indu is about one metre at the shoulder, about two metres from head to tail and weighs 180kg. A tawny owl chick weighs just a few grams.'
    Keeper Lucy Manning said wild tawny owls nest in the tree above the lion enclosure but staff initially thought the owlet had escaped from their owl house.
    She said: 'One day the chick just turned up on the ground. Indu peered at it for a while but then lost interest. I think it was too small to eat.
    'We believe it got away as if she had eaten it there would have been fluff and feathers. It probably flew off as our bird keepers said it was nearly ready to fledge and an adult was seen nearby.
    'The wonderful thing about the photo is the look on the owlet's face - it seems to be demanding food.'
    The pair of Asiatic lions are part of a European breeding programme to protect the endangered species, as only 300 live wild in India.

    Read more: The owl and the pussy cat: Tiny chick moves into lion's enclosure.... and flies away three days later unhurt | Mail Online

  2. #2
    Silver Member clairescavys's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    England (The Shire - AKA Norfolk)


    Awww, that's wonderful! Really made me smile - thanks :-)

  3. #3
    Hit By Ban Bus! Pippin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    I've fallen and I can't get up!


    What a great story, Honey...thank you so much for posting it. I hope you don't mind if I share this with the folks at Le Nichoir; they will love it.

  4. #4
    Elite Member PoisonGirl's Avatar
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    Aug 2009
    In Benedict Cumberbatch's Velvet Tuxedo, USA


    *squee* Cute!!
    “You never know what's around the corner. It could be everything. Or it could be nothing. You keep putting one foot in front of the other, and then one day you look back and you've climbed a mountain.” - Tom Hiddleston

  5. #5
    Elite Member Brookie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    In the "D"


    Hakuna Matata!
    Life is short. Break the Rules. Forgive Quickly. Kiss Slowly. Love Truly.
    Laugh Uncontrollably. And never regret ANYTHING that makes you smile.

    - Mark Twain

  6. #6
    Elite Member Wiseguy's Avatar
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    Jan 2009


    Awwwww - too sweet.

  7. #7
    Elite Member Dean James's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006


    aw.....!!! That's so wonderful.
    Baby, by the time you have kids and they're in school, no one will care about you.

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