Ipswich: Mabel is now a proud mum to little owlet

EVER since she hit the headlines as the most photogenic resident of Christchurch Park, Mabel the tawny owl has become one of the most popular sights for visitors to the Ipswich green space.

Now she’s happily showing off a new addition to her family – this cute owlet who turned out to be the star of the show for many at this year’s Historic Car Run from Christchurch Park to Felixstowe.

Mabel the owl has been a star at the park for many years – or has she?

Park manager Sam Pollard said staff were not convinced the owl currently in residence is the same as that first seen in the park several years ago – Mabel disappears at the start of every year and returns in the spring.

He said: “We think she disappears to raise a family and there have been owlets seen.

“We’re not sure whether the owl that is now here is the same one as we had several years ago – or whether it’s one of her earlier chicks who has moved into the home!”

Mr Pollard said the chick had been seen by his staff several times over recent weeks, but it had put on a particularly good show at the weekend.

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He said: “I think a lot of people were as interested in seeing that as they were in the old cars, it was a great view.”

He pointed out there was nothing particularly rare or unusual about a tawny owl nesting in the park.

“They are quite a common bird and their numbers are pretty good.

“What makes this one so unusual is that she doesn’t seem to mind being in full view of people.

“Normally tawny owls keep away from people as much as possible, and of course they hunt at night so they are difficult to see.

“This one has no problems with being watched.”