“He was not pleased …” 😅
A fluffy new patient was just admitted to the Massey Wildbase animal hospital in New Zealand – a morepork, a sort of small owl. He’d developed a minor skin infection that was giving him discomfort.
Fortunately for the small owl, the situation is pretty simple to solve. However, there was one drawback.
He’d have to take a bath.
According to Pauline Nijman, a Wildbase supervisor, owls loathe getting wet, even if it is raining. So, when it came time to give this owl a medicinal bubble bath, Nijman anticipated that he wouldn’t consider it pampering.
Nijman told The Dodo, “It was a major thing for both of us.”
A disgruntled owl may be seen in photos taken throughout the process.
The puffiness of an owl’s plumage, it turns out, accounts for a large part of its regal aspect. When they’re moist, their appearance changes considerably.
“He’s a little child, but he’s in great shape,” Nijman remarked. “However, after all the fluff is wet, they look really pitiful!”
To treat the infection, the owl was treated with chlorhexidine and then rinsed clean. Nijman writes, “He was NOT pleased.”
Following that, Nijman rubbed him off with a towel and dried him off with an air blower.
“He did dry up wonderfully!” says the narrator. Nijman explained.
The rescued owl was returned to the clinic’s aviary, where he was joined by many other moreporks who are being rehabilitated there, after he was back to his former fluffy self.
“From his ‘ordeal,’ he has healed nicely,” Nijman remarked.
With any hope, that one medical bubble bath will be enough to cure the owl’s skin problem. If that’s the case, he’ll be returned to the wild in perfect condition.
Hundreds of animals are cared for at Massey Wildbase each year, many of which are endangered species. But, while the life-saving therapies given there, such as the small owl’s bath, aren’t always pleasant, Nijman understands that it’s all for the sake of the patients. And it is the most important thing.
“It’s an honor to care for such incredible birds and reptiles,” Nijman remarked.