Joy as barn owl Kendra returns home after dramatic chase
- Credit: Jemma Bateman-Harlow
A family's devastation has turned to joy after an owl they thought lost returned.
Kendra the barn owl had been missing for three days in Northrepps. But after a dramatic chase she was finally brought back home.
Jemma Bateman-Harlow, who with her husband David has owned the four-year-old owl since she was eight weeks old, said she was relieved and delighted to have Kendra back safe and sound.
She said: "We were fearing the worst because she hadn't been spotted at all, but we were trying to stay hopeful."
The couple and their children had searched around the village after Kendra went missing on Friday.
On Monday evening, they went to the site of a reported sighting to sit and keep a look out, and then Mrs Bateman-Harlow got a call from someone saying they had seen an owl in their garden, which they thought was Kendra.
"This was about one minute from where we were," she said.
"But when I got there, she had gone. Then her neighbour called and said 'we've got an owl knocking on our conservatory door'.
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"It transpired into a massive chase scene, like something out of a film. She went from house to house and garden to garden.
"I called her to the glove and she came but then she flew off again."
Luckily, David managed to grab hold of Kendra's jesses - leather strips hanging down from her anklets which are used in falconry - and she was brought safely home.
Mrs Bateman-Harlow said the owl would not have been able to survive for long in the wild, as she not been raised to hunt for her food as other owls do.
Kendra - who is usually kept inside on cold winter nights - flew away after being spooked by strong wind, breaking a clip that had kept her tethered to a falconer's glove which Mrs Bateman-Harlow had on when she was taking the owl towards the house.
The day after she was found Mrs Bateman-Harlow said Kendra was "exhausted, but completely fine".
She said: "The outpouring of love and support has been incredible, we have been overwhelmed.
"So many people have been calling us and we had people with torches walking around looking for her."