A baby seagull fell through the roof of the the public library in Morro Bay, California, this week — and into people’s hearts.
When she came into work on Tuesday, library associate Kat Holland said she realized something strange was going on.
Staff the day before had heard noises coming from the ceiling, but thought little of it. But Holland, who volunteers with Pacific Wildlife Care in Morro Bay, knew something else was up.
“This is the second year that … a pair of Western gulls has nested on top of the roof,” Holland said. “The babies have this like huge roof area to just run around on, and sometimes they get lost just going to the underside of the roof.”
Over the weekend, one of the gull chicks apparently fell through a rooftop turbine that’s part of the building’s ventilation system and became trapped.
“You could just hear him running around in the ceiling,” she said.
Library staff immediately called Pacific Wildlife Care to help try to rescue the bird, she said. When the rescuers arrived, a volunteer removed a ceiling tile to locate where it had gone.
The baby gull was nowhere in sight.
“We couldn’t really find him,” Holland said. “While we were on the other side of the room, he just dropped out of the ceiling — we actually caught it on security cam — and then he just started running around.”
Though the young seagull initially landed in the biography section, Holland joked, “I think he was looking for graphic novels.”
As the fluffy little bird ran around, some snapped pictures of it. The staff later named the gull Jonathan Livingston after Richard Bach’s 1970 novella, “Jonathan Livingston Seagull.”
Pacific Wildlife Care representatives were soon able to safely catch the seagull and return it to its nest on the roof, Holland said.
Holland posted a photo of Jonathan Livingston online, and said the response to the bird and its library adventure has been outstanding.
“It’s really been popular,” she said. “You don’t often see a … fuzzy little soul inside the stacks. Yeah, it is a kind of a cute story.”
Holland is considering installing a gull cam on the library’s roof next year so that people will be able to watch the library’s new unofficial mascots whenever they want.
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