May 28, 2022 I Nick Redfern

The Mysterious Connection Between Owls and the UFO Phenomenon

There can be very few people with an interest in UFOs who have not heard of the so-called alien abduction phenomenon. The flying saucer phenomenon exploded in spectacular style in the summer of 1947 – when a pilot name Kenneth Arnold encountered a number of strange, delta-shaped object flying in formation over the Cascade Mountains, Washington State. In mere hours, UFO hysteria had begun. It reached even higher levels just one month later when the still-unresolved incident at Roswell, New Mexico occurred. It was not until 1961, however, that the concept of alien abductions caught the attention of UFO investigators. In September of that month, Betty and Barney Hill, who lived in New Hampshire, encountered something very strange on a dark, quiet stretch of road. It was an experience that saw the Hills taken aboard a UFO and treated like definitive lab rats by emotionless, humanoid entities that seemed to have a specific interest in human reproduction. It wasn’t long at all before the U.S. Air Force, the UFO research community, and the media were looking for the truth of the strange affair. Such was the fascination with the story, writer John Fuller was commissioned to write a book on the incident, from which the brief summary above is taken. Published in 1966, it was titled The Interrupted Journey - most apt wording.

Since that fateful night in 1961, literally thousands of people have come forward with near-identical reports. And how many more exist - buried by the witnesses, who fear scorn, ridicule and invasions of their privacy - is unknown. While the alien abduction phenomenon is multifaceted and is typified by layer upon layer of mystery, there is one specific aspect of the puzzle that has a bearing on the matter of shapeshifters – a significant bearing, too. Let us take a look at this often-overlooked angle. In far more than a few cases of alien abduction, witnesses – or victims; take your pick – report something very strange, but which can be found all across the planet. Whether lying in their beds, or driving a long, shadowy road in the woods, they have seen what they so often describe as a giant-sized owl standing at the side of the road and staring at them. There then follows a typically weird and mysterious event, one in which the witness suddenly finds themselves aboard a UFO, and subjected to the kinds of intrusive procedures reported by Betty and Barney Hill. On other occasions, however, the witness only has a vague memory of what happened to them, beyond an eerie image in his or her mind of an owl with deeply penetrating eyes staring at them. The matter of owls and alien abductions has been circulating for a long time.

One such encounter that falls solidly into the "owl category" involves a Scottish woman who we shall refer to as “Maxine,” who I met in 2004. She lives in the Scottish town of Inverness, which is located only a very short distance from the site of yet another famous mystery: Loch Ness, the home, of course, to the long-necked Nessies. On a clear summer day in 2007, Maxine was walking her dog along the hills that overlook Loch Ness when she saw what, from her description, can only be described as an alien Grey. When she first saw it, at a distance of a couple of hundred feet, she assumed it was a young child – chiefly because of its short height. As she got closer, and as her dog froze to the spot, she could see that not only was it not a young boy: it wasn’t even human. Maxine and the Grey stared at each other for just a few seconds, after which is stretched its arms out and, in an instant, transformed into what Maxine described as an impossibly large owl: it was practically man-sized. It immediately took to the skies and headed across the loch at a fast rate. Maxine continue to watch, with astonishment, as the alien-owl thing vanished into the trees on the opposite side of the loch.

(Nick Redfern) Aliens, owls and Loch Ness

The most important aspect of Maxine’s encounter is that she is one hundred percent sure that she did not experience missing time. She does not have any vague memories of being taken aboard some kind of futuristic, alien craft. She is not plagued by graphic nightmares involving extraterrestrials. In fact, she is completely sure that what she recalls is exactly what she saw: a small, alien creature literally shapeshifting into the form of an owl. Interestingly, since her experience took place, Maxine has come up with an intriguing theory to try and explain and rationalize the situation. She now believes that the Greys have the ability to transform their physical appearances. This, she also suggests, means that the Greys can spy on us whenever, and wherever, they choose, without being noticed for what they really are. If we see an owl, a black cat, a German Shepherd dog – the list goes on – we may actually be seeing something very different: a shapeshifted E.T. using a piece of brilliant camouflage.

A similar report comes from “Gary,” of Newport Beach, California, who I spoke with in 2014 at the Joshua Tree, California-based Contact in the Desert conference. Unlike Maxine – who has experienced just one UFO-themed incident in her entire life – Gary has had numerous encounters. His, however, are not of the alien abduction type. For Gary, a store manager store, his experiences have been of the Contactee variety: face to face interaction with very human-looking, long-haired aliens and a wealth of interaction and discussion of a mind, body and spirit nature. As for Gary’s experience with an owl, it occurred out at Giant Rock, California. Close to the town of Landers, Giant Rock is where, from the 1950s to the late 1970s, a famous Contactee named George Van Tassel held yearly outdoor conferences on UFOs. Gary maintains that in November 2001 he rendezvoused at the old rock with an alien name Capsona – a blond-haired, beautiful woman, dressed in a long white gown. The two spent several hours discussing the precarious state of the human race. After which, and with the sun starting to set on the desert, Capsona told Gary to back away, which he did, to a distance of about forty feet. Capsona was suddenly bathed in a white light and was transformed into a roughly four-foot-tall, brilliantly white owl, which took to the skies and that was quickly lost from view.

 (Nick Redfern) Interestingly, artwork of owls at Giant Rock is not rare

Again, and as with Maxine’s experience, there was no hint of a suggestion of a screen memory. Only that of an extraterrestrial with the stunning ability to shapeshift to an owl. Whatever the truth of the UFO-alien-abduction-owl issue, the fact is that there is a link. We just need to put the threads together.

Nick Redfern

Nick Redfern works full time as a writer, lecturer, and journalist. He writes about a wide range of unsolved mysteries, including Bigfoot, UFOs, the Loch Ness Monster, alien encounters, and government conspiracies. Nick has written 41 books, writes for Mysterious Universe and has appeared on numerous television shows on the The History Channel, National Geographic Channel and SyFy Channel.

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