Christmas trees don’t usually come decorated, but one Georgia family found one very special ornament in theirs.
“No joke, we just found a LIVE owl roosting in our Christmas tree. What?!?!?” Katie McBride Newman, wrote in a Dec. 12 Facebook post.
The discovery came as the family was clearing the table after dinner in their Atlanta-area home and her 10-year-old daughter starting hollering.
“She comes very dramatically into the dining room and goes, ‘Mama, that ornament scared me,'” Newman told CNN. “Then she bursts into tears.”
Newman, who had decorated the tree in small owl ornaments, at first thought it was one of those.
But when she looked into the tree, a real life owl turned its head and stared.
It turned out to be an Eastern Screech Owl tucked into their Home Depot purchased tree.
The family opened windows and doors hoping it would just fly away, but it didn’t.
The Chattahoochee Nature Center eventually swooped in to help with the rescue.
Chicken was left for the bird, which may have been trapped in the tree for a week, and then an animal welfare worker stopped by.
“I told her I would try and catch it and do an exam. If it needed immediate care she would take it to a rehabber,” Dawn Ellerman, a wildlife technician at the facility.
She caught and examined the owl, and said it looked healthy.
Once the bird was caught in a crate, it was left outside to be on its merry way.
“We owe so much thanks to the Chattahoochee Nature Center Wildlife team,” Newman said later. “Truly good Samaritans who saved our Christmas Owl.”
And for all this was one very good night.
Photos Billy Newman/Katie McBride Newman/Facebook