Angus is a Rufous Owl, and up until recently, was one of the stars of our QBE Free-Flight Bird Show. The time has come for Angus to retire though; he’s left us at bird show and now resides in the nocturnal house, of the Australian Precinct. Whilst it is sad to see Angus go, after seeing his new home, the bird show team is very excited.
Rufous Owls get their name from their intense rufous (red) plumage, and like most owls are nocturnal. They are found in the far northern parts of Australia, including Cape York and Darwin, tending to inhabit closed, dense tropical forests. Being the second largest owl species in Australia, birds like Angus can take down surprisingly large prey, things almost as big as they are! That means it is not uncommon for a flying fox or possum to end up on the dinner plate of a wild Rufous Owl. The business end of Angus, his large raptorial feet, is his weapon. It makes him the terminator of the forests and enables him to make such impressive conquests.
Although Angus can no longer been seen during our daily shows, his new home presents him in his natural world: lush, dense foliage; iridescent lighting and the eerie sounds of the night. Come and see Angus in the world of night and see if your eyes are as good as his by trying to locate him in the thick darkness. Owls eyes have many more rod cells than us, allowing superior perception in dim-lighting, which is part of what makes them such good night-time hunters!
Bird trainer, Brendan