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Oklahoma Hunter Attacked By Owl While In Tree Stand

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Mike Adney is an avid deer hunter and has been for years. But his latest trip didn't turn out as planned. Mike Adney is an avid deer hunter and has been for years. But his latest trip didn't turn out as planned.
Photo of a barn owl. Photo of a barn owl.
The talons left eight puncture marks on Adney's face. The talons left eight puncture marks on Adney's face.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

The most popular hunting season in Oklahoma is underway right now. More than 200,000 people will hunt for deer, with archery season right now, and rifle season starting in a week and a half.

One Oklahoma hunters' recent trip to the woods turned into a very scary situation.

Mike Adney is an avid deer hunter and has been for years. But his latest trip didn't turn out as planned.

"He hit me full bore, about knocked me out of my stand, caught me off guard, big time," Adney said.

Adney was in a tree stand just before daylight, totally camouflaged except for his eyes, when a barn owl suddenly came at him. On the third pass, his face and right eye took a direct hit from the bird's razor sharp talons.

"My initial thought was that I lost my eye, that's what really scared me," Adney said.

The talons left eight puncture marks on Adney's face.

"He hit me hard, it was like I was sucker punched by somebody."

Those puncture wounds are healing, but the biggest concern is the owl may have a long term impact on Adney's vision. Every time he blinks, it feels like sandpaper.

"The top of my eyeball is just a solid bloodpack," he said.

Adney will have to see a surgeon for a torn retina and low pressure. He hopes he won't need a transplant, but isn't sure yet.

"I mean, I can see and I can make out colors and all that, but it's all a big blur."

Adney said he doesn't blame the owl, which was just looking for a meal. He just wants other hunters to be aware, and if they see an owl, to make it very clear, maybe by uncovering some of the camo, that they're much larger and not a food source.

"It's a rare deal, but hey it happened," he said.

Adney also said what happened to him is an important reminder to wear a safety harness while hunting out of a tree stand.

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