Snowy owl hit by bus in downtown D.C. expected to survive

(Photo: Courtesy Smithsonian National Zoo)

(WJLA) - The white Snowy Owl that has become a wild celebrity in downtown D.C. was hit by a bus this morning but is expected to survive.

The owl was struck Thursday morning by a bus near the intersection of 15th and I Street NW. D.C. police officers transported the owl to the National Zoo, where it was attended to by Dr. Jessica Siegal-Willott at the Zoo's hospital.

The bird was conscious and responsive but subdued when it arrived at the hospital. Zoo officials said the bird did not have any obvious physical injuries but did have blood on it. The owl, which Zoo veterinarians believe is a female, did receive pain medication and fluids.

The snowy owl was first noticed perched on an awning near McPherson Square during last week's blast of frigid temperatures, according to a Washington Post story. The owl later perched itself on a ledge on the Post's building at 1150 15th Street NW.

The bird was resting comfortably and will be picked up by City Wildlife, a D.C.-affiliated animal organization, before being released back into the wild as soon as possible.