Court proceedings at a Gauteng court were halted after a barn owl flew into the court, sending the magistrate, court staff and members of the public into a panic.
In a post on Facebook, the Owl Rescue Centre said it was contacted by the Brakpan SPCA after the feathered friend flew into the court room through a hole in the roof.
“The owl actually flew in, which had the magistrate and the entire room full of people running out, screaming. It took us a while but we rescued the little fella,” the post read.
According to the African Raptor website, the barn owl is the most widely distributed species of owl, and one of the most widespread of all birds and is most recognisable by its heart-shaped facial disc. Barn owls readily live near people, often nesting in man-made structures and are excellent for rodent control and a breeding pair of owls can consume about 80kg of rodents annually.
This year has seen its fair share of animal vs human stories.
Earlier this month, three buffalo were caught on CCTV cameras, roaming near the R25 between Serengeti and Eastlands.
Last month, a lion was reported missing in the North West.
Provincial police spokesperson Captain Aafjie Botma said the lioness escaped while being transported by its owner. The big cat was in a container on the back of a Ford Ranger bakkie.
In January, a female tiger was shot after she escaped her enclosure at a home in Walkerville, south of Joburg. Following her escape, Sheba attacked a man and several animals.
There were also reports of a missing tiger in Edenvale but there has been no confirmation on whether the animal has been captured.