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Where is the owl and what did you do with him?!

I am most distressed by the sudden disappearance of Duo the owl. I find it quite suspicious, and I hope the good people of Duolingo are investigating. Did someone get tired of his crying and abduct him? Has there been a ransom demand? Has he been captured for his beautiful green feathers? Do the angry birds know about this? I want Duo back!!!

May 4, 2012



Due to his overnight celebrity, Duo is currently recovering from dehydration & exhaustion (skill point addiction) in an outpatient facility. We'll be re-evaluating him shortly, and will hopefully be re-introducing him to the wild, perhaps with fewer tears, perhaps with more tears. In the meantime, you can enjoy a rare image of him in happier times at: http://blog.duolingo.com/


@rstaake I am sorry to hear that Duo is not feeling well. I know how stressful startups can be so I entirely understand. I will be sorry to see him go, though, because he was a great cheerleader and always there to remind me to practice. A little practice button in the corner is just so impersonal! As a biologist of course I have to support his return to the wild, though I do wonder if his time among humans and his love of languages will make him unfit for integration into his native flock. Does he even know he is supposed to eat mice after all his time teaching us about apples and sandwiches? I hope he can recover and continue helping us on Duoling, but if not I wish him well!


Hopefully Duo is hanging out with DuoBot and discussing the future of the site.


Maybe If Duolingo had taught us the word for owl and given him somemeanfull sentences he would have stayed ...


I miss duo and hopes he comes back soon to visit. It is nice to hear from a developper and know you keep an eye on these boards. Can I thank you for your hard work.


I think it's clear that people are really attached to the owl from all the time they put into creating their own stories of what happened to it. Duo could be a huge incentive for getting people to do more translating than they would otherwise.


@jsbender In all seriousness, I totally agree. Having that little character (oddly) gave a more personal feel to the site. I think that's very important for learning something that is quintissentially human, and normally done face-to-face. Perhaps as the social features are developed there won't be a need for that, but Duolingo does need a face right now, and the owl was great for that.


The owl is in no way gone, just not used in that sidebar context at this point.


How can you not like the owl, silverapricot? Perhaps you have hidden him away. After all, I do my practice lessons daily just to keep him happy! Bring him back :-)


That owl is still annoyingly evident when you don't make it all the way through a lesson before losiing your heart quota. Oh yes, the owl is watching.


I must say I found the owl a gentle reminder to visit the site. I enjoyed his changing mood being controlled by my activities. I hope Duolingo will bring him back, Viva Búho! (Long live the owl!)


no prroblem :-) glad you're all actively participating and offering valuable feedback. stay tuned.


@naut Yikes. Eating disorders are not pretty! :S


I guess I'm the only one who doesn't like the owl. I'm glad to see it gone. But I do agree that it is nice that this site has a more personal feel than many of the other sites .. I think this question section offers people a way to get involved. Other sites want people to post only in the new language. I find that intimidating and appreciate the intelligent but low-pressure dialog here.


Poor Duolingo II. But I want Duolingo I back. Or at least a T-shirt with Duolingo I on it? She was way, way cooler.


Yeah I would go for a t-shirt with the Duolingo Owl on it. I lost my internet connection for a few days, and I was expecting to come back and find our little green friend in a state of deep clinical depression because of my lack of practice. I imagine he has been in human society for too long to be able to return to the wild (eat mice?? how barbaric!). I hope he recovers from his addictions and returns to be the patient monitor of our practice sessions.

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