Helsinki, Finland, June 6, 2007
A crucial soccer game in Finland came to what you might call a screeching halt when a wild owl flew onto the field.
Nineteen minutes into the Euro 2008 qualifier match, a northern eagle owl swooped in and roosted on one of the goals at the end of the pitch. After a minute or two, it flew to the opposing team's goal, where it continued to suspend play for another five minutes.
Fans cheered as the owl refused to budge, and officials conferred on how to unseat the winged predator.
In time, the owl took off again, flew a couple of laps around the stadium, and perched on a railing at the end of the field while Finland bested Belgium, 2-0.
The Reuters news service described the incident as "a unique occurrence in the history of international soccer."
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Photograph by Stringer/Reuters