"Flaco’s Crash Might Have Been More Than Bad Luck. Here’s What We Know."

"Buildings are a huge danger for birds. They also face other risks, including poisoning that can cloud their brains."

"Flaco spent a year defying expectations, an owl born into captivity who quickly learned to hunt and fend for himself in the wilds of New York City. That ended on Friday when he flew into a building near Central Park. What went wrong?

Did he hit a window that he failed to perceive as glass, like hundreds of millions of birds across the United States each year? Or was he compromised in some way that impeded his ability to navigate New York’s concrete canyons?

A full necropsy, to be performed by the Wildlife Conservation Society, will take weeks. Initial findings were “consistent with death due to acute traumatic injury,” the group said on Saturday evening.

The main impact appears to have been to the body, with substantial hemorrhage. There was also a small amount of bleeding behind the left eye. Flaco’s body condition seemed good. He weighed 4.1 pounds, only slightly less than his last recorded weight of 4.2 pounds at the Central Park Zoo, his longtime home."

Catrin Einhorn reports for the New York Times February 24, 2024.


"What Killed Flaco The Owl? New York Zoologists Testing For Toxins, Disease As Contributing Factors" (AP)

"Death Of Beloved New York City Owl, Flaco, In Apparent Building Collision Devastates Legions Of Fans" (AP)

Source: NYTimes, 02/26/2024