The owl, which may have escaped from an aviary, has drawn crowds to Castle Street, where it has taken up residence.

John Mackay, of North Kessock, said the owl knocked him out and he suffered a 3in cut to the head, while Noel Hill claims he had “a fist fight” with it.

Local raptor expert Tommy Horne is attempting to catch the bird by luring it with dead rabbits.

Eagle owl attacks men in Scottish Highlands.

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