The world's most famous owl, Flaco, has died, according to the zoo.

DETROIT — Officials from New York City’s Central Park Zoo reported Friday that Flaco, the eagle owl of Eurasian descent who became a cherished celebrity after escaping and flying around Manhattan, has passed away. 

A little over a year after being rescued from the zoo’s cage in an unsolved crime, Flaco seems to have been involved in a collision with a building on the Upper West Side, according to a statement from the zoo. 

“The vandal who damaged Flaco’s exhibit jeopardized the safety of the bird and is ultimately responsible for his death,” claimed the press release. “We are still hopeful that the NYPD which is investigating the vandalism will ultimately make an arrest.”

Animal rescue workers from the Wild Bird Fund arrived on the scene of the accident and pronounced Flaco dead not long after. His necropsy was scheduled to take place on Saturday at the Bronx Zoo. 

World Bird Fund posted on X, the social networking platform formerly known as Twitter, that they “hoped only to see Flaco hooting wildly from the top of our local water tower, never in the clinic.” As the organization put it. 

Getting away Someone started Flaco’s time in the skies on February 2, 2023, when they slipped into the Central Park Zoo via a waist-high fence. They broke into the cage and freed the baby owl that had come to the zoo thirteen years ago,  

by cutting a hole in the steel mesh. No details on the crime have been made public after February 2023, when the zoo halted its attempts to recapture Flaco. 

Despite spending his entire existence in prison, Flaco has managed to thrive in the urban jungle. He quickly became a beloved figure in the city. During the day, he lounged in parks and courtyards in Manhattan or perched on fire escapes. At night, he would perch on water towers and hunt the city’s rat population.

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