Owl entangled in soccer net rescued, Kansas sheriff says


The owl was rescued from a Kansas soccer field, officials said.

The owl was rescued from a Kansas soccer field, officials said.

Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office

When a young woman spotted “something big” in the fence of a Kansas football field, she took a closer look.

There, she found a tangled owl on the football field at Western Hills Church in eastern Topeka, as shown in photos posted to Facebook by her aunt. Please note: the photos in the hyperlink are graphic.

“The poor thing was so tangled up,” Terri Geiken said in her public Facebook post on Wednesday.

Concerned citizens have called for help, the Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office said, and his animal control unit has been working to save the bird from the net.

It was a great horned owl, according to WIBW, and it was stuck in the “barrier net” between the field and the parking lot.

“The owl has been taken by a rehabilitator for veterinary care and is expected to make a full recovery,” the sheriff’s office said in a Facebook post on Friday morning.

Shortly thereafter, the sheriff’s office said they learned that the owl was called from “Darius Rucker – you know, from“ Hoot’ie & the Blowfish. ”Darius Rucker – the singer-songwriter, not the owl – leads the Hootie & The Blowfish group.

Geiken said she and her niece, Joelle, visited Darius Rucker – the owl – on Thursday afternoon.

“He looks a lot better than about 24 hours ago,” she said.

And on Friday morning, she shared that the owl should be released soon, after her “full recovery”.

“We love a story with a happy ending !!!” she said.

According to the Great Plains Nature Center, great horned owls, weighing around 3 to 3.5 pounds, are the largest owls to live in Kansas. They eat large rodents, rabbits and even skunks.

“Like all birds of prey, they use their powerful legs and sharp talons to overpower and kill their prey,” the center explains. “The Great Horned Owl’s hold is believed to be more powerful than that of any other North American bird of prey. ”

This story was originally published October 15, 2021 3:32 pm.

Kaitlyn Alanis is a national real-time McClatchy reporter based in Kansas. She is an alumnus of agricultural communications and journalism at Kansas State University.


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