AS a strong conservationist of all animals and birds, I feel some concern for the plight of the owls that are seen on display in and around the city centre and now on show in the gardens of Holy Trinity Church, Goodramgate.

Many people have commented about the way the owls on short tethers, show signs of frustration, often trying to fly off their pegged tethers, then dragged back in an ungainly way.

In a normal habitat, conditions would be in quiet, dark surroundings, waiting for dusk to approach to begin hunting for their prey of mice, voles, frogs etc.

These captive bred owls show all the signs of an unhappy environment and little to do with owl conservation, but more of a mini-sideshow that belongs to the past as the monkey on the shoulder of a holiday snap-shot photographer or on the top of a barrel organ.

DA Heald, Huntington Road, York.