Rescuers monitoring 'missing' Central Park Zoo owl after exhibit vandalized
NEW YORK - Officials "continue to have visual contact" with a Eurasian eagle owl that was discovered missing Thursday night from the Central Park Zoo after the exhibit was vandalized, the zoo said in a statement.
The owl was discovered missing around 8:30 p.m after the exhibit had been vandalized and the stainless steel mesh cut, according to officials.
Eurasian Eagle Owl. (Julie Larsen Maher)
Officials spotted the owl a short time later on the sidewalk on 5th Avenue, but it flew off. Zoo staff then located the bird perched in a tree near the zoo and stayed with it throughout the night.
At sunrise, the animal flew from the tree on and into Central Park, where officials continue to have visual contact with it.
Grassy areas are partially covered with snow powder on Feb. 1, 2023, in Central Park. (Luiz C. Ribeiro/New York Daily News/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
The Central Park Zoo issued a statement: "A Eurasian eagle owl at Central Park Zoo was discovered missing from its exhibit at 8:30pm Thursday evening. The exhibit had been vandalized and the stainless steel mesh cut. Upon notification, a team was mobilized to search for the bird. Citizens and police spotted the owl on the sidewalk on 5th Avenue but it flew off. Zoo staff located the owl perched in a tree near the zoo and stayed with it throughout the night. At sunrise this morning, the owl flew from the tree on 5th Avenue and into Central Park where we continue to have visual contact with the bird. Our focus and effort at this time is on the safe recovery of the owl. We will issue updates as needed."