With its piercing yellow-eyed stare, deep, haunting hoot and mean hunting skills, the Great Horned Owl is exactly the kind that you used to read about in fairytales by the Brothers Grimm.

It is also one of the most common owls in North America and is mostly found deep in the forest, but you could also spot one in the desert, hiding away in city buildings, or even your backyard! Just make sure to go out at night because, like most owls, these majestic creatures are nocturnal.

Image credits: venturacountyfire

So it was no wonder that this owl was a little miffed when he was found near the lines of the devastating Maria Fire in Ventura County, hopping amongst the ashes. It was the middle of the day, he’d lost his home and he couldn’t find anywhere to get some sleep!

Image credits: venturacountyfire

The firefighters who found the owl said that it was very docile, and allowed them to wrap it safely in a jacket to prevent it from getting injured.

Image credits: venturacountyfire

The bird was taken to the nonprofit Camarillo Wildlife for recovery, after which it will be released back to its home when conditions are safe.

Image credits: venturacountyfire

“Many thanks to the hard-working VCFD handcrew who saved the life of this beautiful great horned owl,” Camarillo wrote on their Facebook page. “He was found among the ashes, disoriented and suffering from smoke inhalation and a bad case of flat flies. Thanks to these courageous men, he will make a full recovery and be released back to his territory as soon as it’s safe to do so.”

Image credits: venturacountyfire

Thanks to the hard work and bravery of firefighters like those at the Ventura County Fire Department, the Maria Fire has now been largely contained, with all evacuation orders lifted. “We’re pretty much in the mop-up stage now,” fire Capt. Steve Kaufmann told the Los Angeles Times.

Image credits: venturacountyfire

Image credits: venturacountyfire

The story warmed the hearts of many – any good news coming out of these horrific, ever-increasing wildfires in the western United States is a small blessing.