CALIFORNIA -- An Orange County neighborhood surrounded by palm trees was stunned by an extremely rare sight: a snowy owl perched on a roof.
The unexpected visitor quickly gained a lot of attention, drawing crowds of ornithology experts, wildlife enthusiasts and local residents hoping to catch a glimpse of the majestic creature.
There is no known record of a snowy owl in Southern California, but there was a sighting in Hawaii a few years ago.
It's still not clear how the bird ended up in Cypress. One theory among experts and bird watchers is that it hitched a ride on a ship, ended up in San Pedro a couple months ago and made the neighborhood its home - at least for now.
The author of a guide for bird watchers published by National Geographic told Eyewitness News the owl likely spent a lot of time flying over the open ocean, which is common, and if it's doing well here, it'll likely stick around until spring.
"My argument would be: If it's sustaining itself... there's little parks with lakes with ducks, and getting enough to eat... what are you going to do? Take it to the north, where there's lots of snow and ice, and thrust it in a new environment?," said Jon Dunn, author of "National Geographic Field Guide to Birds of North America."
The owl's diet can consist of gulls, mice and even cats.
Cypress city officials said there are no plans to remove the owl from the neighborhood.