Last month we shared a story about a territorial owl in Salem, OR who was dive-bombing unsuspecting park joggers passing through its turf. Today we’ve learned about another unusual owl who seeks out people, this time apparently as a sign of affection. Meet the “Cuddly Owl of Noordeinde,” a stunning eagle owl who’s lately been surprising villagers in the Dutch town of Noordeinde by gently landing on the heads of passersby.
The large and handsome owl is surprisingly careful to not use his talons when making these cranial landings. After alighting on someone’s head the owl simply perches there for a minute or so before flying off in search of a new landing spot.
Some Noordeinde residents suspect the owl may have escaped from an aviary in Oosterwolde, which might help explain his extraordinary tameness. Birders and photographers from around the country are flocking to the town (sorry, not sorry) to catch sight of this remarkable raptor.
“Whilst photographing the owl, it did try to land one my head once,” said Shaefer to NL Times. “However, as soon as I lifted my camera to get a shot, the owl flew onto my neighbor standing by my side.”