10 Stories

No Joke: New Signs at Park Warn of Angry Owls

Oregon takes Rachel Maddow's suggestion to heart

(Newser) - MSNBC host Rachel Maddow inspired Oregon's capital to post new warning signs in a park where four runners reported attacks from an angry owl likely defending its nest against perceived threats. One jogger, a surgeon, said the owl hit him twice in Bush's Pasture Park in Salem, and... More »

Jogger's Scalp Punctured by Owl

Ron Jaecks thought it was a mugger, or an aneurysm

(Newser) - Ron Jaecks thought he was being attacked by a person, or possibly that he was having a stroke or an aneurysm. But the truth turned out to be much stranger. The Oregon man was jogging in a local park around 5:15am Tuesday when his stocking cap was pulled off... More »

Paraglider Charged With Harassing Owl

Former TV pitchman in Utah allegedly kicked one

(Newser) - A paraglider accused of chasing and kicking a barn owl is looking at possible jail time and six-figure fines as a result, reports the Salt Lake Tribune . The accused, Dell Schanze, was allegedly featured in a since-deleted YouTube video showing off his owl-harassing ways. Federal wildlife officials weren't amused,... More »

Owl Breaks Into Couple's Birdcage, Kills Canary

Apartment was on 10th floor; second canary survives

(Newser) - An owl flew into a 10th story apartment in Coeur d'Alene, apparently opened a bird cage, and killed one of two canaries inside. Sue Sausser says she awakened Sunday to find bird droppings and feathers all over her apartment, the Coeur d'AlenePress reports. Sausser found the brownish, yellow-eyed... More »

New Owl Species Hid Under Experts' Noses for 100 Years

O. jolandae thought to be another species, ID'd by its hoot

(Newser) - Researchers have identified a new owl species—improbably, more than 100 years after it was first discovered, reports Wired . The Rinjani scops owl, from the Indonesian island of Lombok, was thought to be a member of Otus magicus since 1896, when a British naturalist collected several specimens. But a visiting... More »

Soccer Player Kills Rivals' Owl Mascot

Rival player kicks bird off pitch during Colombian match

(Newser) - Turns out that kicking an opposing team's mascot wasn't such a great idea: A Colombian soccer player who booted his opponents' lucky owl may face a fine and possibly even prison time after the creature died. The bird had wandered onto the field and been struck by a ball, at... More »

Climate Change May Doom Gray Owl

As winters warm, brown owls taking over: study

(Newser) - Here's a real-world change being chalked up to climate change: The number of brown owls is increasing as the number of gray owls decreases, say Finland researchers. Gray plumage is normally a dominant trait in winter climes, possibly because snow makes brown owls more visible to predators, the BBC explains.... More »

Harry Potter Owl Demand Threatens Birds

Not so magical for smuggled creatures

(Newser) - Harry Potter has made owls so popular that bird smuggling is on the rise, threatening the survival of the unusual creatures in India. "Following Harry Potter, there seems to be a strange fascination even among the urban middle classes for presenting their children with owls," said India's Environmental... More »

China Uses 'the Pill' to Stop Gerbil Overpopulation

Officials hide contraceptive meds in gerbil feed

(Newser) - Chinese officials have resorted to contraceptive pills to control the exploding gerbil population threatening a fragile desert ecosystem, the BBC reports. The government is placing feed pellets mixed with the medication by the gerbils’ burrows, which damage the roots of what plants survive there. Authorities have tried measures to boost... More »

Hoot Now, or Forever Hold Your Peace

Latest UK wedding fad: owl serving as ring-bearer

(Newser) - It’s the wedding stunt of Ron and Hermione’s dreams: an owl ring-bearer. The Guardian reports on the latest nuptial essential in a look at a British handler who has trained "Ollie" to land on the best man’s gloved arm at the sound of a whistle, carrying... More »

10 Stories