Owl you need is love: Bird nursed back to health after wings shattered by truck
An owl that was hit by a truck and travelled from Massachusetts to New Hampshire wedged between the cab and trailer is ready to hunt crawfish and moles again.
The bird's wings and tail feathers were shattered and it showed signs of head trauma after the bird was discovered by the driver and taken to an owl rehabilitator in Epping, New Hampshire.
Jane Kelly helped care for the bird over the last six months and said the owl, named Trucker, was released on Saturday in Wilmington, Massachusetts, where the mishap originally occurred.
Ms Kelly said the owl was ready to take flight and head home.
New Hampshire Fish and Game conservation officer Chris McKee said it is a miracle the owl survived the ordeal.
He said the owl was most likely trying to hunt for rodents along the road when it collided with the truck.
Truckers Will Sword and Tyler Buckley, based in Londonderry, New Hampshire, were on the road in Massachusetts when they heard a bang.
At first, they thought the truck had hit a tree.
But when they stopped and Mr Buckley got out to investigate, he was shocked to see an owl trapped between the cab and the cargo hold.
He recalled it was flapping its wings and trying to escape.
New Hampshire State Police referred them to Ms Kelly, who advised the truckers to gently remove the bird from the truck with heavy gloves to avoid the sharp talons, keep it warm with a blanket and place it in a box.
"It's been a long haul," said Ms Kelly, who runs a rehabilitation and education centre for birds of prey.
She said besides signs of head trauma, the owl seemed to be an older bird that may be getting cataracts.