A BIRD lover is growing increasingly concerned for the whereabouts of his barn owl.

Andrew Ridyard was flying the female bird in his garden in Moorside Avenue, Farnworth, last Wednesday when a loud noise caused her to fly away.

After The Bolton News reported a description of the owl, there have been several sightings of the bird.

In the early hours of Sunday morning, Deborah Littler, of Little Hulton, spotted an owl matching the description in Hacken Lane, near Darcy Lever Cricket Club.

After trying to approach the bird she reported seeing it fly off towards Moses Gate Country Park.

The following day, David Harding said he heard an owl near his house in Kingsland Road, Farnworth.

He said: “I presume it is the same owl because it is very unusual to hear such a noise in Farnworth.”

The most recent sighting of the owl came on Wednesday evening, over a week after it went missing.

School Hill resident Roger Duckworth was driving in his car in Topp Way, just outside Bolton town centre when, he saw an owl perched on the pavement.

He said: “I was very shocked to see it there, it had the jesses straps on that were described by the owner.”

Mr Duckworth phoned the police to ask for advice and was told to try to get the bird into a cardboard box — but by this time the bird had flown away.

Mr Ridyard said he was grateful to all those who have reported seeing his bird and remains hopeful that she will be found.

He said: “If anyone does see her, she is really friendly and won’t bite so please try to put her in a box so we can get her home safely.”

Anyone with information should contact The Bolton News on 01204 537270.