The Hawk Conservancy Trust in Andover, Hampshire welcomed two new long-eared owlets last month. The three-week old balls of fluff have already been introduced to members of the public in the attraction’s Discovery Barn, and it is hoped both birds will fly in displays in the future.
The long-eared owl is native to Europe, Asia and North America and stands up to 40cm high, although the blackish ear-tufts positioned to the centre of the head make the owl appear larger while perched. The female is bigger in size than the male, with both possessing rusty-orange coloured eye disks, brownish vertically streaked feathers and toes entirely covered in feathers.
The Trust’s new long-eared owls will also go on to take part in Owls by Moonlight, an evening display where visitors can experience these mystical birds twist and turn through the night sky and duck as they silently skim the tops of their heads. A guided tour of the grounds to visit other resident owls is also given, but these events are very popular, so advance booking is advised.
The Hawk Conservancy Trust is open from 10am to 5.30pm daily. For more information and to book, go to http://www.hawk-conservancy.org