Barry the Owl Brought Us Together. What Will We Do Without Her?

Many Barry lovers were only able to recognize each other by their first names or sight. Others became friends and exchanged text messages about Barrys whereabouts, using their own shorthand: she's at The Blair Witchy Place, she's at The Hooting Place, she is at the raccoon Place.Stella Hamilton, a long-time birder, commented that Barry's openness to welcoming us into her space is what amazes her most. She even allowed us to take a bath in Azalea Pond and watch her interact with us. The moment she looks into you eyes, that's when her soul touches you. She will let you know what she feels.Karla Bloem is the Executive Director of the International Owl Center in Houston, Minn. According to her, owls are creatures that have a habit. Barry's frequent visits to Central Park suggest she grew up in an urban environment. She adds that owls, like dogs and cats, are individuals with their own personalities. Barry's willingness to openly express her emotions and to sleep and bathe with us (activities which could make her more vulnerable to predators) is a testament to her comfort with humans.Each evening, about an hour before sunset, seven to eight Barry fans, including Mr. Lei and Ms. Hamilton, would gather in Ramble to observe Barry's pre-fly out prep. They would sharpen her talons, preen her feathers and do a few owly yoga stretches. Barry invited her people to join her for the first part of her nightly hunts. She flew slowly from perch-to-perch, with occasional pauses, as if determined not to let anyone get behind her. After about 45 minutes, she would fly on her own, taking off into the sky, while her human companions headed home.