Flaco the owl has captivated New Yorkers for weeks after escaping from Central Park Zoo: 'Fly free!'
It’s been a month since a 13-year-old Eurasian eagle owl escaped from the Central Park Zoo, but the public’s fascination with him is still going strong.
Flaco the owl made his great escape from the Central Park Zoo in early February after his habitat was vandalized and he was able to slip out. The incident made both local and national headlines at the time, though the story took an unexpected turn when the zoo announced it would allow the bird to remain free.
“[Flaco has been] very successful at hunting and consuming the abundant prey in the park,” the zoo shared in a statement last month. As a result, animal experts have felt confident he can survive in the wild on his own and have let him be.
“Life is not a spectator sport. If you're going to spend your whole life in the grandstand just watching what goes on, in my opinion you're wasting your life.”
- Jackie Robinson
I’m not gonna waste my life, I’m LIVIN baby! #birdcp #birdcpp #birding
📸 credit: @ValerieBlock pic.twitter.com/ziNC5QRl9t
— FlacoTheOwl (@flaco_theowl) March 6, 2023
Ever since then residents and avid bird watchers have been thrilled by sightings of Flaco all over Central Park. In fact, he’s quickly become something of a local celebrity, appearing in photos shared across Twitter, TikTok and Instagram.
He even has his very own Twitter handle, @flaco_theowl, which posts regular photos and updates about his whereabouts.
Today marks 1-month of #freedom since I left the #CentralPark Zoo! I'm a free bird.
I'm proud of my journey & adventures the past month. Thank you to my supporters.
Now it's time to find a nice, tasty rat to celebrate! Hoot Hoot! #birdcpp #birdcp #FlacotheOwl #birding pic.twitter.com/YYtv3a8Ni3
— FlacoTheOwl (@flaco_theowl) March 2, 2023
Fans even leave sweet messages for Flaco in the comments.
“I’m in love with you Flaco!!!” wrote one person. “Fly free!!!”
“We are rooting for you, Flaco,” added someone else. “I hope you have a long, happy and safe life.”
Wildlife experts certainly hope so too.
“We are going to continue monitoring Flaco and his activities and to be prepared to resume recovery efforts if he shows any sign of difficulty or distress,” the Central Park Zoo said in a statement.
For now, though, he seems to be doing just fine.
Bravery is to stand up for what you believe in, so I’m standing tall. #birdcp #birdcpp #birdphotography #birding #BirdsOfTwitter #birdsofprey #BirdsSeenIn2023 #birds #bird #flaco #flacotheowl #centralpark #owl #owls #feathers pic.twitter.com/ajCwY6imkO
— FlacoTheOwl (@flaco_theowl) March 13, 2023
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