We've all noticed Pot Plant Owl 'coughing', and it has caused concern.
This morning, we went to our vet who has been away recently - an expert Avian Vet, Dr Brett Russell, who is very well-known and highly regarded in his field. He does a lot of work for FreeMe's wildlife - sick / orphaned / injured. We showed him the latest footage of PPO's 'cough' and asked him what he thought.
Brett's advice is rather to be safe than sorry. We must bring PPO in for tests and x-rays.
We contacted FreeMe Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre to come and catch PPO. They have the equipment and expertise to attempt to catch PPO without undue stress on her.
Tomorrow FreeMe will attempt to catch PPO. At this time, we will be switching off the webcam - we don't want any extra 'attention' on the event. I'm sure you can appreciate how delicate this situation is. It is not like taking a tiny sick chick out of the nest - this is much more difficult to accomplish.
If FreeMe is successful at catching PPO, Dr Russell will take over and I'll keep you updated.
As for the chicks: for the moment, they will remain in the pot on the balcony where Pappa should continue to feed them. However we will monitor the situation. If the chicks are not getting sufficient food, their diet will be supplemented under the supervision of FreeMe.
I'm not going to attempt to guess what happens next, as this is completely unchartered waters for us.
All I ask, is that you don't panic or send us a flood of messages asking for updates and expressing concern. PPO is perfectly fine, until tests prove otherwise. And we will cross that bridge if we come to it.
I will keep you constantly updated based on information I receive. Again, I ask that you please not keep on querying directly with me, because I promise you, I will let you know as soon as I know.
Thanks for your understanding.