It's a true Christmas miracle, isn't it?
Amid all the chaos that we have faced and survived in the nightmarish year of 2020, the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree arrived in New York City this week and provided people with much needed hope. However, little did the delivery people know, the tree was carrying some really precious cargo along with it. Unknown to everyone, a tiny owl was hiding in the branches, only to be discovered by the workers after they arrived.
As workers unwrapped the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree this week, they discovered a tiny owl clinging to the branches of the 75-foot Norway spruce. @joefryer has the details. 🦉 pic.twitter.com/IJdn8hwaLW— TODAY (@TODAYshow) November 19, 2020
Earlier this week, the workers discovered the tiny owl while setting up the 75 feet tall Rockefeller Center Norway spruce Christmas Tree and rescued it from the branches. Later on, the owl was brought to the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center in Saugerties, New York, for rehabilitation. According to the rehab center, the tiny owl is in good condition and recovering just fine. A spokesperson for the Rockefeller Center told CBS News that even though each branch is individually checked before it is wrapped, birds can still find their way inside the trees during the journey.
While the workers believe it was a baby owl, given its tiny size, the center said it is actually an adult. In fact, it is the Northern saw-whet owl and the tiny bird was fittingly named 'Rockefeller'. Workers at the rehab centre believed that the poor bird didn't have any access to food or water for about three days as the giant tree traveled from Oneonta, New York to Manhattan. The center said it has "given him fluids and are feeding him all the mice he will eat."
Posting the owl's story on Facebook, they wrote, "A Secret in the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree. Ravensbeard is excited to share a rare Holiday story with you. Yesterday morning, I received a phone call from someone who asked if we take in owls for rehabilitation. I replied, “yes we do,” there was silence for a moment and she said “OK, I'll call back when my husband comes home, he’s got the baby owl in a box tucked in for the long ride.” I asked where her husband was when he found the owl. She said he works for the company that transports and secures the Christmas tree in Rockefeller Center."
The post continues, "She lived about an hour south so we met in the middle to do the transfer. Once secured, I peaked in the box and saw this little face looking up at me. He/she was a little Saw-whet owl, the smallest owls we have in the northeast. All baby owls are born in the spring so the idea that there was a baby owl in November didn’t make sense. Back at Ravensbeard Wildlife Center, we’ve given him fluids and are feeding him all the mice he will eat. It had been three days since he ate or drank anything. So far so good, his eyes are bright and seems relatively in good condition with all he’s been through. Once he checks in with the vet and gets a clean bill of health, he’ll be released to continue on his wild and wonderful journey. Our hearts go out to all those "behind the scenes" workers. Great job and thanks for saving "Rockefeller"!
So, when can we buy a Rockefeller Owl ornament? Maybe as a donation to animal rescue? In this utterly horrific year, that sweet little owl face reminds me that there's still happiness to find. @hodakotb @SavannahGuthrie— Monica Potaczala 🌿🍞☔☕ (@ki4eld) November 19, 2020
Since taking in Rockefeller, the rehab center has raised over $8,276 (at the time of publication). The founder and director of the center, Ellen Kalish said that all donations will go towards a new facility. Meanwhile, the Rockefeller Christmas tree will be decorated over the next few weeks and its famous 5-mile long lights will be illuminated on December 2 at 7 p.m. Happy Holidays everyone!