The Spotted Eagle Owl returns to HESC

Almost a year ago we reported that the female spotted eagle owl we had released back into the wild had returned to the centre. Since being released this owl has remained in the area, often returning around September/ October to breed.
Spotted eagle owls don’t often build their own nests, and instead prefer finding a spot that is hollowed out where they can safely lay their eggs. In this case, the spotted eagle owl has chosen a leopard orchid on a sausage tree (Kigelia Africana). The same nest is known to be used repeatedly for many years.
Our curators have recently started seeing this female owl again, often in the evenings when the curators feed the baby elephant, Shawu. On a few occasions the owl has snuck up on the curators and landed on a perch nearby, giving them a fright. We are happy to have this owl back, as that means we will get to see her raise a number of owlets again.
Some visitors to the centre have had the opportunity to catch a glimpse of her perched on her favourite tree, close to the entrance of the deli area. Some have even had a chance to get some wonderful photos of her just before they go on the daily tour.
Whether this owl is here to breed, remains to be seen. We will keep you updated.