D.C. saddened by the death of its beloved snowy owl

Bird-lovers across the District are mourning the loss of their favorite feathered friend: the snowy white owl.

She was first seen in downtown D.C. one bitter winter day in January. Because these birds are typically only found in the Arctic region, it caused quite a stir when passersby spotted her casually perched on an awning near McPherson Square Park.

The legendary owl, who both survived being hit by a D.C. bus and SUV earlier this year and led the District police on a 2-hour chase, died in Minnesota last week. Although the cause of death is still uncertain, it is believed that a vehicle is to blame.

Her body was found not too far from the University of Michigan Raptor Center–the owl rehab center where the bird was treated and released in mid-April. In its natural Arctic habitat, the owl would not have had experience flying near cars, people, or windows; thus, she most likely did not recognize them as a threat.

Snowy owl, your ethereal beauty and renegade spirit will fondly be remembered. May you forever continue to outrun cops (and avoid motor vehicles).

Video: Washington Post via Youtube

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