(BCN) — A group of alert Prunedale neighbors and a veteran animal rescue volunteer reunited a baby Great Horned Owl with its parents and helped facilitate an the adoption of an orphaned nestling with the same avian family last month. On April 20, the neighbors discovered an abandoned 3-week-old owl and reached out to the SPCA Wildlife Center in Monterey County.

Together with SPCA volunteer Phil Johnson, the group tried to no avail find the baby’s family, so Johnson took the little nestling back to the Wildlife Center for care, according to SPCA officials. After the owl’s parents were spotted in the neighborhood a short time later, Johnson returned to the area with the original chick and another orphaned Great Horned Owl baby, since raptors will occasionally make room in their nests for such birds, SPCA officials said.

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Johnson also brought along a new nest made by the SPCA because the first one was found to have fallen from its tree — along with evidence that another baby didn’t survive. The two youngsters were put in the new nest, which was secured high up in the tree, and volunteers played a recording of owl nestling calls, which soon enough attracted the owl parents to their new home.

“It feels great to see this success,” Johnson said in a news release Monday. “It can be hard to re-nest and it really feels good when it works out.”

Jack Hawkins, the neighbor who first alerted the SPCA, said the new nest and its inhabitants can be seen from all over the neighborhood.

“Now we can all see the nest from our properties and keep an eye on the owls,” Hawkins said. “My wife was watching and could see the babies sitting up and eating on the edge of the nest.”

The fuzzy little nestlings will stay in the nest for several more weeks and will remain with the adult birds for months while they learn to fly and hunt, according to the SPCA.

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