3 birds recovered after escape from aviary at Oakland Zoo during storm

Six birds flew out of the Oakland Zoo's African Savanna aviary in Oakland, Calif., after a storm blew down a tree tearing the enclosure on March 21, 2023. Three birds had been recovered as of March 24. (Oakland Zoo via Bay City News)

Three birds have been recovered and three others are still flying free at the Oakland Zoo after a tree fell onto an aviary there amid stormy weather earlier this week, a zoo spokesperson said Friday.

Two pied crows, three superb starlings and a hooded vulture flew out of the aviary in the zoo's African Savanna area after the tree fell and tore the mesh on the structure during wet and windy conditions Tuesday.

The three superb starlings, a small and brightly colored bird native to eastern Africa, flew back into their habitat and were recovered Thursday, but zoo staff still are trying to recover the crows and vulture, zoo spokesperson Isabella Linares said Friday.

The three birds "are close by and on zoo grounds," Linares said.

Staff have eyes on the three birds still on the loose and are monitoring them 24 hours a day, she said.

A pathway in the African Savanna area of the zoo where the tree fell had to close Thursday, so visitors that day were not able to see the African elephants further along that path, Linares said.