Surprising Stowaway: Owl Hitches a Ride in SUV’s Grille After Being Struck on Highway

One lucky owl lived to hoot another day after it was hit by an SUV on a Florida highway.

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One lucky owl lived to hoot another day after it was hit by an SUV on a Florida highway.

The incident unfolded earlier this month, when Sonji Coney Williams knew she hit a bird while driving down the Florida Turnpike. “I was driving about 60 miles per hour,” she told the Associated Press, when the crash occurred. “I said, ‘Oh my god, I hit a bird,’ and I felt so bad. But it was very dark, and we didn’t pull over.” She couldn’t tell what kind of bird she hit or even if it was still alive. Little did she know the the owl had not only survived the crash — it was along for the ride, sitting snugly behind the grille of her Ford.

(MORE: How Do Owls Turn Their Heads All the Way Around? Here’s the Science)

Williams only realized that the Great Horned Owl was trapped there the next day, when another family parked in front of her pointed it out. “They said, ‘Don’t move, don’t move, you have something in the grille of your truck,” she told Florida’s WKMG. A closer look revealed the magnificent feathered friend, sitting upright and peering out from behind the grille bars — with large cat-like eyes.

Williams called the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission who extricated the bird and affirmed it was in good health. It’s now resting up under the care of vets, reports ABC. After it recovers from its odd journey, we hope the owl can get back to munching on mice and delivering letters, as we predict they do on a daily basis.

MORE: Hedwig, Is That You? Snowy Owls Apparate Into the U.S.

8 comments
Angietweetz
Angietweetz

@jmooallem But still. Hitchhiking is dangerous.

DrewInGeorgia
DrewInGeorgia

@jmooallem Thank goodness the owl was okay. What kind of moron hits something loud enough to make them say "crash" but doesn't pull over?

JamesCaruso
JamesCaruso

happy ending..beautiful birds.. not enough of them...