Zoo: Flaco the owl dies after ‘apparent collision’ with building

Sad News from Central Park Zoo

Tragically, Flaco, the beloved Eurasian eagle owl, has passed away. It was a somber Friday evening when Central Park Zoo confirmed the heartbreaking news. Flaco, who had captured the hearts of many, met his demise in what appears to have been a collision with a building on West 89th Street in Manhattan.

The Zoo’s Statement

The zoo’s official statement expressed deep sorrow: “We are saddened to report that Flaco, the Eurasian eagle owl discovered missing from the Central Park Zoo after his exhibit was vandalized just over a year ago, has passed away after what appears to have been a collision with a building on West 89th Street in Manhattan.” The statement revealed that residents of the building notified the Wild Bird Fund (WBF) about the incident.

The Tragic Event

Staff from the WBF responded promptly, but unfortunately, Flaco was found non-responsive. Despite their efforts, Flaco was declared dead shortly after. The WBF then informed the zoo staff, who arranged for Flaco to be transported to the Bronx Zoo for a necropsy. This marked the end of a tumultuous journey that began with Flaco’s escape from the Central Park Zoo’s enclosure.

Flaco’s Escape and Year in the Wild

In February of the previous year, vandals broke through the enclosure, allowing Flaco to escape. It had been twelve years since Flaco had first arrived at the zoo. Remarkably, Flaco celebrated a full year of living in the wild just before his untimely demise. Bird watchers frequently spotted him in Central Park and on the Upper West Side during his time in the city.

Remembering Flaco’s Legacy

New York City residents gathered in Central Park to pay their respects to Flaco at a makeshift memorial near his favorite oak tree. It was a testament to the impact he had on those who admired him. Christina Zacharczuk, an avid bird enthusiast, expressed her shock and sadness at the news of Flaco’s passing. She remarked, “This was not the news that I was expecting to hear when I woke up; it was like receiving a hit to the gut.”

Flaco’s Global Fame

Flaco’s fame extended far beyond the borders of New York City. David Barrett, a birder responsible for Manhattan Bird Alert, highlighted Flaco’s global popularity. “For a considerable amount of time, Flaco was the most well-known bird in the world,” Barrett noted. Throughout Flaco’s journey across Manhattan, from the East Village to the Upper West Side, admirers followed his every move with awe and admiration.

Gratitude from the Zoo

Central Park Zoo expressed gratitude for the outpouring of support and concern for Flaco throughout the past year. They especially appreciated the swift response from the Wild Bird Fund in their efforts to assist Flaco during his final moments. Despite the tragic outcome, the zoo remained hopeful that justice would be served for Flaco. An ongoing investigation by the New York Police Department aimed to hold the vandals accountable for their actions.

Flaco’s Legacy Lives On

Flaco’s legacy will endure in the hearts of those who cherished him. His captivating presence brought joy to countless individuals, leaving an indelible mark on the city he called home. As New Yorkers reflect on Flaco’s remarkable journey, they are reminded of the fragility of life and the importance of cherishing every moment. Though Flaco may no longer grace the skies above Central Park, his spirit will continue to soar in the memories of those who knew and loved him.

A Final Farewell

As the city mourns the loss of Flaco, let us remember him not for how he met his end, but for the joy and wonder he brought into the world. Flaco may have left this world too soon, but his legacy will live on in the hearts of all who had the privilege of crossing paths with him. Rest in peace, dear Flaco. You will be dearly missed.

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