Sometimes it's nice to come across a story that is a bit quirky ... and that has a happy ending. This one, which I came across on the BBC News on-line on 29 January 2020, is pretty much a perfect fit.

Rescued owl was 'too fat to fly', Suffolk sanctuary says

The owl on the scalesAn owl rescued from a ditch and thought to be injured was in fact just too fat to fly, a bird rescue centre has said.

Suffolk Owl Sanctuary said the "soggy" bird was brought in by a landowner.

When staff examined the little owl (Athene noctua), they found it to be "simply extremely obese" and "unable to fly effectively" as a result.

The owl was put on a "strict diet" to slim down from its 245g to a more "natural weight" and has been released back to the wild, the sanctuary said.

The sanctuary, based in Stonham Aspal, said when the bird was weighed, it was roughly a third heavier than they would expect a large healthy female little owl to be.

The sanctuary said it was "extremely unusual for wild birds to get into this condition naturally".

Head falconer Rufus Samkin said: "Where she was found is very productive land, and it's been a mild winter and there's a lot of food around - voles, mice.

"We think she's just done incredibly well for herself and overindulged."

He said the owl lost between 20g and 30g over a couple of weeks while staff monitored its food intake.

"We may see her again - we hope not," said Mr Samkin. "Hopefully, she's learnt to keep her weight in trim so she can escape any predators or being picked up." 

Rescued owl was 'too fat to fly', Suffolk sanctuary says - BBC News