Eagle owl take up residence in the centre of Vilvoorde

Residents of the Flemish Brabant town of Vilvoorde, around 10 kilometres north of Brussels, report that an Eagle owl has moved into the town centre. An in places drab industrial town, Vilvoorde is not really somewhere that you associate with natural beauty. However, over the past few days the owl has been pleasantly surprising locals by going to sit on their balconies.         

Houari El Hannouti and his daughter live on the Hendrik Concienscestraat they were able to get very close to the impressive bird.

Mr El Hannouti told the VRT “It was really impressive. We believe that it is tame as it clearly is not afraid of people. It has probably escaped from somewhere as it has a piece of leather belt hanging of its leg. We have reported it to the police and in the meantime they have received a number of calls from other residents”.

The owl is believed to be staying somewhere near to the cooling towers.  

“He probably finds food here and there. A local resident told me that she had heard him at night as well. It is phenomenal”, Houari El Hannouti added.

He was on the balcony of my daughter’s bedroom. She was not entirely at ease, but we clearly don’t need to be scared. It is simply super that we are able to see an animal like this from such a close distance. It has a wing span of 1.5 metres. Parts of the Ardennes are the only area of Belgium where the eagle owl is found in the wild.

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