Kearns and Sons RS Aesthetics

Baby owl survives fire, owl family picks busy spot for nest

Great Horned Owl hatchling that survived brush fire near Victor. Judy Hoy photo.

Owl family living near Corvallis four-way stop. Michael Howell photo.


A family of owls, living just north of Victor, suffered a recent tragedy when one of the young died of smoke inhalation. A second baby from the nest did survive and has been nurtured back to health by local wildlife rehabilitator Judy Hoy. Victor Fire Chief Dennis Pings said fire crews were fighting a brush fire that got out of hand last week and saw a large nest in a burning cottonwood tree that had some young birds in it. Unable to reach the tree with the fire hoses, firemen chopped the tree down in an effort to save what they believed at the time might be baby bald eagles. They turned out to be two baby Great Horned Owls, one of which had already succumbed. Hoy said the small owl that survived had red eyelids that were scorched by the heat, but his eyes have already healed and he is recovering well. Across the valley, a Great Horned Owl is raising her young at the busy four-way stop intersection in Corvallis. While the mother owl watches the children playing in the schoolyard, her own young take more of an interest in the photographer lurking on the sidewalk below. The owl family is the subject of much study and enjoyment by the students and the thousands of people who drive by daily on the Eastside Highway.

One Response to Baby owl survives fire, owl family picks busy spot for nest
  1. Beth Swallow
    April 28, 2012 | 12:26 am

    Great article on the owlets being hatched this spring here in the Bitterroot. Judy Hoy brought the baby owl from Victor to visit our Kindergarten kids today. I took a picture of the owls on our playground and upon closer examination, saw an unhatched egg in the nest! But it’s getting harder to take good pictures, now that the leaves are budding out on the tree.

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