A heartless thief walked into a Long Island wildlife rehab center and stole a falcon earlier this week, but fortunately the bird was returned unharmed a couple of days after the theft.
Buster, a 14-year-old American kestrel falcon, was stolen from Volunteers for Wildlife, an animal rehab center, on the afternoon of December 23rd. After his birdnapping the rehab center put up a Facebook message describing Buster as imprinted on humans, meaning he identifies as a human and not a bird, and unable to survive in the wild. The center merely asked that Buster be returned, no questions asked.
According to Newsday, that's exactly what happened on Christmas: Buster was found in a box at the door of the center, apparently unharmed but "very hungry."
And while Volunteers for Wildlife won't be pressing charges over the birdnapping, whoever did it may have known a thing or two about bird stealing. Board member Jim Jones told Newsday that the thief would have to have been familiar with how to remove Buster from his jess, a thin leather strap that attaches him to his perch.