A tiny owl is recovering after it was found tucked away in the branches of Rockefeller Center's Christmas tree in New York City.
The Ravensbeard Wildlife Center in Saugerties, New York, said it received a telephone call on Monday morning from a woman who said her husband discovered the owl while working for the company that transports and secures the iconic tree in Rockefeller Center. The 75-foot Norway spruce was cut down last week in Oneonta, New York, and loaded onto a massive trailer before embarking on a 170-mile road trip to Manhattan, along with its feathered stowaway.
The couple had thought the owl -- now named Rockefeller -- was a baby due to its petite size, but the wildlife center said it is an adult northern saw-whet owl, one of the smallest owl species in North America.
"All baby owls are born in the spring, so the idea that there was a baby owl in November didn’t make sense," the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center wrote in a Facebook post on Tuesday.
Rockefeller was taken to the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center, where a team of wildlife rehabilitators is giving the owl fluids and "all the mice he will eat."
The wildlife center, which aims to rescue, rehabilitate and release local wildlife back into their natural habitats, said Rockefeller will be released back into the wild once given a clean bill of health by a veterinarian.
"It had been three days since he ate or drank anything," the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center wrote. "So far so good, his eyes are bright and seems relatively in good condition with all he’s been through."