Tiny owl rescued from Rockefeller Center Christmas tree
© Ravensbeard Wildlife Center

A tiny owl was rescued from the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree this week.

The Ravensbeard Wildlife Center in Saugerties, N.Y., shared on Facebook on Tuesday that they received a call asking if they would accept an owl for rehabilitation. The person who called the center said her husband works for the company that transports the Rockefeller Center tree, and he found the owl within its branches. 

The wildlife center said the bird is a male Saw-whet owl, the smallest variety of owl that lives in the northeast U.S. He has been dubbed “Rockefeller,” after the Christmas tree’s destination.


At the rehabilitation center, the bird has eaten mice and received fluids. It had been an estimated three days since the bird ate or drank anything when he was recovered, although he was not injured. 

“So far so good, his eyes are bright and seems relatively in good condition with all he’s been through. Once he checks in with the vet and gets a clean bill of health, he’ll be released to continue on his wild and wonderful journey,” the Ravensbeard Wildlife Center shared on Facebook.

A Secret in the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Ravensbeard is excited to share a rare Holiday story with you. ...

Posted by Ravensbeard Wildlife Center on Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Ellen Kalish, director and founder of the wildlife center, told the "Today" show that “I was thrilled that he was alert and looking up at me and not just a little heap in the bottom of the box."  

“We had people calling and thanking me and so grateful to hear some good news in these times because it just needed to be shared.”

The owl is set to be released back into the wild in the coming days.

The Rockefeller Center Christmas tree was set up this week in New York City for the holiday season, though Twitter users were quick to jab this year's tree, mocking places where it looked scraggly.