I guess the owl Christmas card was an omen. Friday night, we were on an evening wildlife safari on the dirt roads in the woods on my parents' farm. My niece spotted this screech owl in a chinaberry tree. We were in a very loud pickup truck about 5 feet from the branch it was sitting on. We watched it through the driver's side window for about five minutes, then decided to drive back to the house and get our cameras.
When we returned, the owl was sitting in exactly the same spot. Even with the noise and with my niece and I snapping flash photos, it didn't budge. My brother even talked to it. After a few minutes of posing for its closeup, the owl flew to a branch about 5-6 feet higher in the tree. My brother thought the bird might be sick. Dad's guess was that it was young and inexperienced with nosy people in pickup trucks.
This photo is one that my niece took. Mine were terrible.