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Owl rescued from Rockefeller Center Christmas tree

Bird discovered by worker transporting tree
Posted at 7:01 PM, Nov 18, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-18 19:19:59-05

NEW YORK — A sweet surprise was found in the nation's most famous Christmas tree.

A tiny owl was rescued from the Rockefeller Center tree as it was being secured.

Experts at the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center said it's a saw-whet owl, the smallest in the northeast part of the country.

According to the center, it's unusual to find a baby owl this time of year since they're born in the spring and summer, so they knew it was an adult.

Owl rescued inside Rockefeller Center Christmas tree
The bird called "Rockefeller" was discovered by one of the men who works for the company that transports and places the tree at Rockefeller Center.

The owl, they're calling Rockefeller, is being cared for at the center.

The bird was discovered by one of the men who works for the company that transports and places the tree at Rockefeller Center.

He brought the owl home, and his wife called Ravensbeard, knowing the tiny raptor needed expert care.

Rockefeller has an appointment with the veterinarian to make sure there are no fractures or more serious conditions.

Owl rescued from Rockefeller Center Christmas tree
The owl appears to be in good condition after a worker took the bird to a wildlife rehabilitation center.

Workers at Ravensbeard said this is a first for them, but they were happy to help the owl. So far, the bird is doing fine.

"With all the commotion, I highly doubt it flew in. What I suspect is that it was in the tree when they cut it down, and it probably got trapped when they wrapped the tree and some of the branches," said Ellen Kalish, the director of Ravensbeard Wildlife Center.

"The people had put some of the limbs from the tree in the bottom, so he at least had something familiar, but he just looked up at me like, you know, he was as surprised as I was and basically was in great condition."

Officials said the owl will be released back into the wild when it's healthy enough.

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