Owl Who Was Stranded At Sea Takes First Flight Back Home
When sailors aboard a small trawler off Canada's east coast peered up at the bird perched on their rigging, they assumed it was a seagull.
What other bird would be hanging around a boat some 200 miles from the nearest shore?
It took a while for the crew to figure out that their stowaway was one very lost snowy owl - an owl whose incredible adventure is recounted in a video posted to YouTube.
He had migrated too far south from his traditional habitat in Canada's North, according to the video, and found himself stranded on a boat.
Once they learned their accidental stowaway was too far from shore to fly home, the sailors caught the bird, aiming to keep him safe below deck.
They fed him and named him after the vessel, Titan.
But their best efforts were not quite enough to care for the panic-stricken owl, whose health began to deteriorate.
The captain called a Nova Scotia-based animal rescue - the Cobequid Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre - to pick up Titan once the boat reached shore.
Life at sea had not been kind to him. His wrists had become battered and exposed from flailing about in captivity.
Patched up at the animal hospital, Titan was then taken to the Cobequid Rehabilitation Centre where he could get back into the swing of being outside.
After four months spent mostly in an enclosure, Titan began dreaming of a bigger sky. In fact, he started demanding it.
Titan the snowy owl had been taken under one wing after another - from the compassionate crew of the trawler to the staff at Cobequid who nursed him back to health.
It was finally time for him to fly on his own two wings.
Titan was released, at last, into the wild, carrying with him a tale to tell of high-seas adventure and kind-hearted sailors. And humans who do noble work for all lost souls.
Want to support the work the Cobequid Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre does in rescuing countless snowy owls and other wildlife? Consider making a donation here.