Tuesday 17th December 2013
Firstly I’d like to thank all of Ambrose the European Eagle Owl’s well wishers for their kind sentiments. Ambrose has had his operation, and it went well, or at least as well as it could, considering the fact that he had a massive tumour on his left wing.
It was decided to give him a local anaesthetic, as, at the grand age of 31, a general anaesthetic might have been problematical. He had been on a course of antibiotics for a week, to clean up any residual infection round the sight, as this particular growth had also been weeping like an open sore. I had to hold him down on the operating table. The thing about owls and animals in general is that they don’t understand when somebody is trying to help them. The tumour had actually grown larger in the space of a week. The anaesthetic duly administered, our intrepid vet Ian Hunter skilfully incised round the affected site. The tumour had in fact grown through the whole wing, near the crook of the elbow joint. On a bird’s wing, there is a flap of skin on the inside of this joint. Ian Hunter managed to cut the growth out of this flap of skin, and actually leave enough to stitch back together again.
Our vet thinks this is a ‘follicle based’ tumour. It has been sent off for histology. What I can say, is that Ambrose was holding his wing in a more relaxed natural manner, when I put him back in the quarantine unit. He is still on a daily dose of antibiotics, until Thursday. The incision sight appears to be healing well. Fingers crossed, he’ll be able to go back in to his aviary very soon after that.
We have had some new arrivals at the centre. The Burrowing Owls have decided to breed at this time of year!! Having said that, this isn’t the first time they have ‘recycled’ at this time. It has become an almost regular occurrence. I’ve known it to happen on at least 3 other occasions over the past 15 years. Anyway, the Burrowing Owls have at least 3 owlets as we speak. They must be around 4 weeks old by now. It’s a pity we can’t watch them on the CCTV camera we have installed in their nest box. A few years ago, we put this set up together, but one of the people who were instrumental to the operation of this camera passed away suddenly, taking all his operational knowledge with him. Due to other priorities taking over, we never managed to get this particular camera on line again.
See you on Yuletide Eve!
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