This is the shocking moment an owl was interrogated by superstitious Mexican villagers after being set on fire ‘for being a witch’.
The terrified animal was filmed being questioned by its captors from inside a scorched cage in the city of Durango, north-west Mexico, with its feathers badly charred and its legs bound.
Believing it to be a witch, the female villagers can be heard demanding the owl reveal its human name and turn itself back into a woman if it wants to be freed.
The horrific scene was captured on video and later uploaded to social media by the villagers.
Footage shows the burnt owl screeching at its captors as it flaps around inside the cage–just seconds after being set alight by the women.
But the women interpret the bird’s cries as proof that it is really a witch and does not like the fact that its true identity has been discovered.
They then repeatedly ask the owl to identify itself and at one stage, read sections of the Bible in the belief that this will force the animal to turn back into a woman.
They are also heard recounting stories of how the owl had been seen looking through the window at the home of one villager, and how it had apparently tried to curse another.
The city of Durango, like many places in Mexico, includes the superstition that some women are witches that have the power to turn into animals.
Following its publication, the video was widely condemned by social media users, who urged police to track down the villagers and punish them as a warning to others to avoid such ‘foolish’ beliefs.
One user wrote: ‘This is just an animal inside a cage and anything would scream if it was threatened by these women in this way.’
Another added: ‘This is just superstitious nonsense and I really wish that authorities could finally do something treat these people like the criminals they are.’
It is unknown what happened to the owl following its interrogation.
[Editor's Note: We've decided not to include the video, but it is available at the original article link below.]