1. ITV Report

Owl babies get round-the-clock care

Keeper Jimmy Robinson and his two new housemates Photo: BNPS

Two burrowing owlets have taken over one keeper's life at Longleat Safari Park in Wiltshire. They were hatched in an incubator and have had to be hand-reared. Jimmy Robinson is giving them round-the clock care.

“Basically I have had to have them with me 24 hours a day every day and that means taking them home with me in the evening and getting up in the middle of the night to feed them. As I spend so much time with them they do look at me as their surrogate mum and will follow me around the house or sit on my shoulder"

– Jimmy Robinson, Keeper

The pair have been nicknamed Linford and Christie in honour of the Olympics. They come from North and South America where they live in underground burrows that have been dug out by prairie dogs and ground squirrels. Unlike most owls they are active during the day

Linford and Christie are not "night owls" Credit: ITV West

They were hatched at the Hawk Conservancy Trust in Andover in February and are just over six weeks old. When they are older they will join other birds of prey in the Hunters of the Sky display at Longleat

“Although they are small birds they do grow incredibly quickly. These guys will be fully fledge within the next month, their feathers are coming through nicely and they are already getting used to flapping their wings”

– Jimmy Robinson, Keeper
This little fellow will soon be a major attraction at Longleat's Hunters of the Sky display Credit: BNPS