An obese owl thought to be injured and unable to fly was just too fat to take flight, officials with a bird sanctuary said. (Courtesy Suffolk Owl Sanctuary/Courtesy Suffolk Owl Sanctuary)

Obese owl released back into the wild after becoming too fat to fly

The 245-gram little owl, affectionately named Plump, was put on a strict diet and slimmed down nearly 30 grams to a more natural weight before being released back into the wild, the Suffolk Owl Sanctuary said.

“It is extremely unusual for wild birds to get into this condition naturally," the sanctuary said on social media.

After investigating, the group determined she had not escaped from an aviary. The area were she was found was teeming with rodents and Plump likely binged on mice, said Rufus Samkin, the group’s head falconer.

"Where she was found is very productive land, and it's been a mild winter and there's a lot of food around - voles, mice,” Samkin told the BBC. "We think she's just done incredibly well for herself and overindulged."

She was put on a strict diet for more than two weeks, NBC News reported. The sanctuary posted a video Thursday of Plump’s release.

“We may see her again - we hope not,” Samkin told the BBC. “Hopefully, she’s learned to keep her weight in trim so she can escape any predators or being picked up.”

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