Sunday 21 January 2018

Angry owl strikes another jogger

The owl has reportedly attacked four joggers in the park
The owl has reportedly attacked four joggers in the park

It appears the angry owl of Oregon has attacked another jogger.

Brad Hilliard says he was jogging near Bush's Pasture Park in the state's capital of Salem when he felt a scratch on the back of his neck and something swooped off with his favourite running cap.

It is the fourth likely owl attack in or around the park since last month, the Statesman Journal reported. One jogger said the owl whacked him so hard he thought he was having a stroke.

When Mr Hilliard saw one of the signs the city posted warning of aggressive owls, he realised what had happened.

"It was almost like you touched the tip of the knife but you pulled away before it does any real damage," he said.

The bird has been identified as a barred owl, a species that has gained notoriety along the west coast of America as a 20th century invader from the Great Plains that is crowding out the smaller, endangered spotted owl.

Local birders have speculated about the Salem owl's origin, parks superintendent Keith Keever said. The animal is likely to be one of a pair establishing a nest in a new area, he said.

Mr Hilliard said he is not giving up on the hat and will go back to the park to search for it.

"I'll keep buzzing by there until it turns up," he said. "I can't imagine a bird or a person wanting a sweat-stained hat I've had for five years."

Press Association

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