Hoo Did This?

Humane Society offers reward for information about owl snared in trap

A poor owl’s ordeal started Monday when its leg got stuck in a steel trap and got worse when doctors had to remove the leg. Do you know who set the trap? There’s a reward for that information.

The Humane Society is offering a $2,500 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction of the person who set the trap that snared a great horned owl in Wallingford.

The Humane Society wants the bird to live out its life at a wildlife education center or similar facility.

People started coming together to help the owl on Monday, when a resident of Old Durham Road saw an emaciated owl with its right leg caught in a steel trap. It was dragging the trap down the road.

The bird was taken to Yalesville Veterinary Hospital in Wallingford, where veterinarians had to amputate the leg.

What will happen to the owl is not known.

The Yalesville Veterinary Hospital has received calls from places as far away as Canada on interest of taking the bird. 

However, federal officials must first approve a waiver to a wildlife law that says protected birds must be euthanized if they can't be returned to the wild because of the loss of a leg or wing.

Steel traps are legal in Connecticut to hunt fur-bearing animals, but only if they are tethered to a stake and marked with the identification of the trapper, who must have a license from the state Department of Environmental Protection.

However, the trap on the owl’s leg met neither requirement, so the owner of the device could face state charges as well as federal charges for ensnaring a bird protected under the U.S. Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

Whether the owl will be released into the wild or sent to a sanctuary will depend on its ability to eat, which it has been demonstrating and its ability to hunt in the wild.

The U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife will make the final decision of what will become of the bird. That decision can come in a few weeks.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
Contact Us