Arthur Terry could have been mistaken for Hogwarts this week when a large rare owl – thought to be one of two escaped birds from nearby Ash End Farm – landed in school. But when rescuers arrived to take her back home, they discovered that this once extinct creature was not one of their missing owls after all.
Now eagle-eyed members of the public are being called on to help deliver the lost owls, Hermes and Hector home, and to help reunite the Arthur Terry owl (nicknamed Hermione by staff) with her owners.
It was an average Monday morning when a female European eagle owl – one of the largest breeds in the world – swooped into Arthur Terry School. Staff quickly spotted the unexpected arrival, safely perched on a pallet and traced her to Eclipse Falconry, based at Tamworth’s Ash End Farm.
Delighted owner, Craig Davis, who had lost owls Hector and Hermes two days previously (13 January) due to an unsecured aviary door, arrived at school hoping to collect one of his birds, only to find an entirely different owl.
After bidding farewell to Arthur Terry, Hermione was transported safety to Ash End, where she is now settling in the aviary.
Craig has taken to Twitter and Facebook in the hope that he can trace his beloved missing owls and has issued two photographs of the breeds of bird.
He said: “Both Hermes and Hector have been raised together since they were chicks and shared the same aviary. They disappeared in the early hours of Saturday morning. Neither bird has anklets or jessies on. The photographs are not of Hector and Hermes, but are a very good likeness. We are all very upset and doing all that we can to find them as the weather is turning wet and cold and they will be hungry and exhausted.
“I’m pleased to report though that the Arthur Terry owl is happy and settled and we hope to reunite her with her owners.”
Sue Bailey, Arthur Terry School’s assistant headteacher, said:
It’s great news that Craig rescued our owl and that she is doing well. However, it’s sad that two birds are still missing and we hope that all three beautiful creatures are back in their rightful homes soon.”
Harry Potter fan and Arthur Terry senior administrator Jane Humphreys, who initially contacted Craig, added:
It’s not every day you come into school and see such a magnificent bird. We’ve had robins and sparrows and even ducks before, but never an owl. There’s a mystery as to where she came from and why she chose to land at a secondary school in a residential area – maybe she was hoping to take her O.W.L exams?
We just want a happy ending for all the birds and we are hopeful that the community can help.”
Anyone with any information should contact Craig on 07908538037.