We are talking about a nocturnal raptor protected and almost extinct by the hand of man, due to a mixture of fear, superstition and ignorance.
Yes, it is true that it is the only bird to which the only case of having killed an adult man is attributed, by tearing his jugular with its powerful claws, but the owl just defended its nest and the man, believing it harmless, did not heed the owl’s warnings.
The plumage of the owls is not the same as that of the rest of the birds; Its feathers are much softer and fluffier, which reduces the turbulence of the air between them, considerably reducing the sound of its fluttering. In this way, practically none of its prey is able to hear the owl approach until it is already on top.
Among their prey are insects, fish, mice, rabbits, snakes, small foxes, birds and other raptors and, lately and due to the constant deforestation and urbanization, they are being observed hunting domestic cats.
Its camouflage is quite good and is associated with one of its peculiarities: they are extremely defensive with their nests.
In this regard, owls have been filmed having caught a prey in a valley at mid-morning and remaining immobile on the ground with the dead prey until nightfall, so as not to reveal to possible predators or usurpers of nests the position of their nests and offspring.
In the same way, it is known that in times of reproduction they rarely build nests, but occupy old nests in stumps of trees, or that they usurp other nests by killing their original owners and their young.
It is known that females can lay between 1 and 14 eggs but, generally, they do not lay more than 4 eggs. The incubation, which is the task of the female, can last between 4 and 5 weeks.
In extreme environments it has been observed that, to ensure the survival of at least one of their chicks, the female kills the weakest one to feed the brother.
Some other interesting facts about owls:
1. The sound that these birds emit is called hoot or ululate.
2. They usually have only one partner in their life.
3. They drop a dead prey at the feet of a female as part of an improvised bridal ceremony.
4. They can rotate 270º their head in the longitudinal axis, towards both sides.
5. They do not have eye mobility.
6. The weight of their big eyes equals 1/3 of the total weight of their head.
7. They have one of the best night eyesight but even they can not see clearly at closed night.
8. Their sight is better by far than by close.
9. They have small whiskers next to their beaks that, like the whiskers of cats, serve to expand their sense of smell.
10. They have an extremely sharpened ear.
Frontpage Image Source: