A Great Horned Owl peers out from behind the brick of the Andrews building on campus in September. Great Horned Owls are Alberta’s provincial bird and one of Canada’s most common large birds of prey. These owls are among the world's most adaptable bird species in terms of habitat, and they don’t move far from the area in which they are born. They nest as early as March, and they are known to prey on skunks.
Great Horned Owls have large eyes, pupils that open widely in the dark, and retinas containing many rod cells for excellent night vision. While the eyes (or in the case of this photo, the eye) of Great Horned Owls don’t move in their sockets, the owls can swivel their heads more than 180 degrees to look in any direction. They also have sensitive hearing, thanks in part to facial disc feathers that direct sound waves to their ears.