Hikers Catch a Rare Sight of an Owl Swimming For It’s Life In A Canyon


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429 shares, 419 points

Owls are amazing, majestic creatures that we have all come to love. We hear them at night as they wake from sleeping all day. You see them in nature when going for hikes. Wherever you see them, it’s a joy to be in their presence. However, owls are not meant to swim. Their feathers don’t allow for soaking up all that water. It makes them vulnerable in the water, as they cannot immediately take off. The water will weigh them down and make them easy prey for other predators. That is why it was amazing when a group of hikers captured a video of a great horned owl swimming in a canyon.

 

hikers get video of owl swimming
Image via screencapture from YouTube video

Hikers follow a swimming owl

 

Derrick Zuk and his friends were hiking through a canyon in Lake Powell between Utah and Arizona when they came upon a great horned owl swimming. It was a younger owl, making this an unusual sight. Their feathers are not water proof, making it an unusual sight. This owl was literally fighting for its life, trying to swim to safety.

 

Although they like to bathe their outer feathers, you won’t see them swimming on purpose. These birds have no defense in the water. If they cannot find a way to ascend from the water, it could be life threatening. Owls need to find somewhere to land quickly to thoroughly dry out their feathers.

 

owl swimming in front of hikers
Image via screencapture from website We Love Animals

 

Geoff LeBaron from the National Audubon Society told National Geographic that the owl we see in the video, “‘…is most likely a young great horned owl that just began to explore the world beyond its nest.’ “I suspect it actually fell out of the nest,” said LeBaron. “Great horned [owls] do nest on ledges on cliffs…”

 

Getting to safety

 

The hikers couldn’t take their eyes off this majestic creature. They were nice enough to follow it till it was able to get to a place to dry off. Zuk and his friends went off on the rest of their hike and when they returned a couple of hours later, the owl was gone. Hopefully the owl was able to get to safety!

 

“This bird is young enough that the parents were probably still caring for it, so hopefully once the folks go by, the bird dried off and its parents found it,” LeBaron offered.

 

Check out the video below that quickly went viral when Zuk and his friends posted it. Don’t forget to share with your friends and let us know what you think.

 

 

Featured Image from YouTube video

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