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The New Paper
May 5, 2022
Not known so much for its swimming prowess, an owl had to be rescued by a group of dragon boaters in the Marina Channel recently.
The rescue, uploaded to TikTok by a user who wanted to be known as Tan, saw the barn owl being helped out of the water with a plastic scoop.
It took a number of attempts before the bird made it onto the boat, as it tried flapping its wings to get away.
When it was finally brought “on board” the owl looked soaked, dishevelled and exhausted.
Tan explained in the comments section that they used a scoop instead of their hands as they were unsure if the bird would bite them.
One commenter pointed out that the owl's sharp talons could have severely injured its rescuer even if it was only grabbing for stability.
The dragon boaters – from the Ang Mo Kio-Hougang Trident team – later handed the owl over to staff at the Water Sports Centre, who placed it in a box to dry.
The dragon boaters told Mothership.sg that the Water Centre had contacted ACRES (Animal Concerns Research and Education Society), and that the owl will be assessed for its condition before release.
While owls are technically able to swim, it's usually the last resort for them as they are defenceless in the water.
When owls are spotted swimming, it is usually after falling out of their nest, failing a test flight, or from trying to escape a predator.