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Norman, The Brown Booby, ‘Back Where He Belongs’ After Errant Trip To The Frigid U.K.

GEORGE TOWN — Norman, the brown booby bird might have logged the most unlikely air miles in aviation history.

The red-footed brown booby, a native to tropical zones, was discovered on a southern English beach on September 4, some 5,000 (8,000 kilometers) from his nearest Caribbean habitat.

It was the first recorded sighting of the species in Great Britain.

Named Norman by his rescuers, the starving dehydrated bird spent months under heat lamps as a Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) wildlife center carefully and lovingly nursed him back to health.

Wildlife officials said today that the bird is back where he belongs, a Cayman Islands nature reserve, following a 12-hour British Airways flight Thursday with a veterinary escort.

The other pilot on the flight, Capt. Shawn Griffiths, described Norman as “by far the most unusual” passenger that he’s ever had.

Brown boobies are also in the Virgin Islands

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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