Hotel signs up three baby owls
Published 13/05/2011 | 09:13
Guests at a hotel are being greeted by unusual new receptionists.
Baby owls Luna and Manuel are the latest addition to the staff at Bovey Castle in Devon.
Looked after by falconer Martin Whitely, they greet guests checking in and out and also entertain children staying at the country estate in the heart of Dartmoor National Park.
A hotel spokesman said the four-week-old owls had replaced Guinevere, a white-faced Scops owl that used to live at the hotel.
"She flew off to have babies and didn't come back," she said.
"The plan is that they will live in behind reception - they will be there for a few selected hours during the day. The reception team are being trained by the falconer to look after them and feed them."
Luna, a Ural owl, will visit the hotel daily from the nearby Dartmoor Hawking School of Falconry while Manuel, a rare Mexican striped owl, will live in reception with a new baby barn owl called Basil that is yet to move in.
The owls are already proving a hit with children visiting the hotel with their families, especially when they are fed their afternoon snack - a dead mouse.
The hotel is planning to introduce "evening owl sessions" which will see owls from the falconry school flying for the guests.