Last week we took a drive down to the George C. McGough Nature Park which includes the Largo Bird of Prey and Exploratory Nature Center. Inside the Nature Center, at the front desk, we were introduced to Lucy, a Screech Owl who has become the Center’s official greeter. Visitor’s love Lucy and I got the impression Lucy liked all the attention she receives.
Unlike the other birds of prey at the center, Lucy is completely healthy. So you may be asking, what is she doing at the center? Why isn’t she out in the wild? Well, according to the volunteers we spoke to, Lucy was stolen as a chick from her nest by someone who decided the owlet would make a good pet. She was so young, her eyes were still closed at the time. When she eventually opened her eyes, Lucy’s first sighting was that of the human who took her from her natural home. This person began posting photos on their Facebook page which was discovered by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission. The owlet was confiscated and the individual was given a hefty fine. Lucy, who only knew humans, could not be released into the wild. She taken to the Largo Bird of Prey and Exploratory Nature Center where she is happy being among her own kind….people.