This Great Horned owl is flying free thanks to the diligence of the rehabilitators at Wild Instincts, a facility for injured wildlife located outside of Rhinelander. This owl has an interesting history and is lucky to be alive.
Its story began on a stormy morning in late October when Valerie Bishop was driving to work at her job as a fill-in manager at the Shell Station on Hwy. 47 in Rhinelander. The power was out and employees had called her in. As she was driving down Timber Dr. in a heavy downpour, she thought she saw a piece of paper flying in the wind. Turned out it was this owl going after a mouse running across the road. Valerie heard a “thunk” and thought she killed the bird. Unbeknownst to her, the owl had lodged in her grill and when she pulled into work, some men exiting the station told her about it. The owl was unlodged and taken to Wild Instincts and amazingly suffered no broken bones. However, its elbows were dragged along the road as Valerie drove and it needed special medication to help heal its wounds.
Friday was the big day. It finally was set free and Valerie and her grandson Cyrus were on hand to watch the owl fly to its new home.