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THE GREY OWL

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The great grey owl is a large, reclusive predator of the taiga’s coniferous forests. Plunge marks in the snow are usually the only evidence for its presence. Distinctive extra-large facial disks direct sound to feather covered ear openings, providing super-sensitive hearing. This enables the great grey owl to accurately locate prey, even under two feet of snow or in a tunnel. With soft feathers, it can glide unheard from its perch to dispatch an unfortunate rodent with its sharp talons. The abundance of food, especially voles, is crucial for the number of eggs a female will lay. Great grey owls will travel vast distances when local prey is scarce.

 
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Posted by on October 1, 2013 in Wildlife, Wildlife viewing

 

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