Great Gray Owls: Expert Listeners

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A top winged predator, the Great Gray owl thrives in mature northern forests with open spaces. During the winter months, a mature raptor will eat up to a third in her body weight each day. And although Great Gray’s boast ice-pick talons, a sharp beak and powerful flying ability, these birds have one incredible hunting weapon: their highly sensitive ears.

Great Gray owls have over-sized facial disks that direct sound to their ears. During the cold winter season she hunts by hearing alone, listening for the rustling of small animals on the ground.

A Great Gray’s sense of hearing is so strong, she can listen to the stirring of a field mouse beneath a blanket of snow, and determine which ear receives the sound first. She will then turn her head left and right until the sound arrives at both ears at the exact same moment – and then she will dive in on her unsuspecting prey.

Predators across the globe fight to survive, hunting the air, land and sea. But alpha predators are the best of the best  – their unique abilities separate them from the pack.

Watch World’s Deadliest: Predator Superpowers on Friday August 6 at 10P et/pt to learn more about predatory animal species and their special skills.