Sometimes on a still night when the window is open, we are startled awake with a booming call.
WHOO HOO HOO HOO!
We have lived in our wooded neighborhood in Chapel Hill for eight years, but it was not until two days ago that my husband finally caught a glimpse of the barred owl. Some say the owl's call sounds like "who cooks for you all." I disagree. The barred owl is not saying anything so mundane. His hooting is terrifying, other-worldly, a scream in the night.
Sometime after 6 p.m., my husband saw a large bird in an apparent struggle on the ground under the neighbor's trellis. The owl then flew, clutching a small animal, into a pine tree. Since the owl's back was turned, he whistled to make it turn around. The owl's eyes are uncanny, I think. I can't stop looking into them.