Tirupati: An endangered barn owl was rescued from the Thanapalli forest area on Wednesday. Farmers found the bird that was struggling to fly and informed the Red Sanders Anti-Smuggling Task Force.

“Soma Sekhar and Suresh found the endangered bird in their farm at the Thanapalli forest area on Wednesday morning. They informed the local task force team who immediately rushed to the spot and rescued the bird,” said task force SP Ravi Shankar.

The task force officials took the owl to their office before handing it over to the Sri Venkateswara Zoological Park in Tirupati of Andhra Pradesh . The zoo officials said the female owl is between 1 to 2 years old and appears to be healthy. They said the bird will be released in to the forest after they monitor its health condition.

The owl which had white patches all over its body is an endangered species under Schedule 3 of the Wildlife (Protection) Act, 1972. Any kind of trade is prohibited under the provisions of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), Mr Shankar said.

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