Club pro saves rare owl after chasing it through people’s gardens

Emma Williams
By Emma Williams November 20, 2017 15:13

The head professional at Thorpeness Golf Club in Suffolk has saved a rare Ural owl following a bizarre and almost literal wild-goose chase through several people’s gardens.

Christine Langford, who has five wins on the Ladies European Tour, had heard that Dawn – one of a pair of Ural owls – had escaped from owner Alec Mayhew’s aviary, along with partner Misty, and was feared lost.

“I’d seen TV and radio appeals calling for people to help find Dawn and was becoming increasingly worried for her safety as severe winds were forecast.

Christine, Alec and Dawn

“When she was spotted in the woods opposite my house, Alec rang the doorbell on and I knew this was our best chance to reunite her with him and his amazing family of 37 owls,” said Christine Langford.

Christine, an honorary member of the PGA and a founding member of the Ladies European Tour, set out with Alec holding a collection of nets, extension poles and her camera to try and bag the bird, which is most commonly found in Europe and northern Asia.

“After around three hours of chasing Dawn through several residents’ gardens, Alec managed to net her while she rested on a garden fence. There wasn’t a dry eye in the house when we finally got her.

“I’ve certainly never cried after making a birdie before,” added Christine.

According to owl keeper Alec Mayhew, owls don’t eat or drink when they’ve flown the nest, so it was estimated that Dawn could only have survived for a few more days.

“In 30-years playing professional golf, this is easily my most special birdie. I’m delighted for Alec and Dawn and would like to thank all the people in Leiston, Suffolk, who made us coffee while we trampled around their back gardens chasing an owl,” said Christine.


Emma Williams
By Emma Williams November 20, 2017 15:13
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