The Ultimate Owl Quiz

Staff

What feat of the owl captures people's attention?

The ability of the owl to fly in virtual silence captivates people.

What Greek goddess was associated with the owl?

The goddess of wisdom, Athena preferred the wise owl as pet and offered it special protection.

According to legend what announced the death of Julius Caesar?

The hoot of an owl, according to legend, announced the death of Julius Caesar.

What is the symbolism of an owl in Hindu culture?

The owl is a symbol of luck and prosperity in Hindu culture.

What purpose does silent flight serve?

It enables the owl to sneak up on its prey.

What is it that allows owls to fly quietly?

The design of theirs wings allows them to glide with less flapping.

More specifically how is the noise dampened?

The unique design of the leading edges of their primary feathers reduces the noise caused by turbulence.

Some owls have extra vertebrae in their necks, why is this?

Since their eyes are fixed, the extra vertebrae allow the head of the owl to rotate 270 degrees, which can prove useful when hunting.

Why are the primary feathers of the owl serrated?

When flying, the serration splits the turbulence into smaller currents, while the edges of the feathers muffle the sound of air flowing over the wing.

What do some people believe is another purpose of the primary feathers?

The belief is that while flying these feathers may shift sound energy to a higher frequency inaudible to prey.

What are the secondary feathers made up of?

They are made of soft fringes that reduce turbulence behind the wings.

Why are there downy feathers on the owls legs?

These are to absorb any remaining noise resulting from flying.

How can engineers use what they know about the owl to make aircraft fly more silently?

They are considering covering the landing gear with a velvety covering similar to the downy feathers on the owl's legs.

How can engineers modify an aircraft based on the anatomy of the owl?

The idea is to create a retractable fringe similar to the owl's trailing feathers.

Why does the aircraft industry seek to reduce the noise made by aircraft?

Many airports have strict noise restrictions. Reduced noise would mean more flights could take off, thereby increasing revenue.

What economic benefit do researchers hope for from studying the owl?

They study the design of owl's wings not only to reduce noise, but also to keep takeoff energy efficient.

Where is the Quiet Aircraft Technology project being carried out?

It is located at NASA's Langley Research Center.

What is the frequency which the owl's down absorbs to prevent being heard by its prey?

Frequencies above 2,000 hertz are absorbed to eliminate the sounds an owl's prey can hear.

In what recent popular movie does the owl appear?

The owl appears in the Harry Potter movies and books.

Where does the Jung Owl live?

It lives in the Amazon Basin of Peru.

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Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

The owl is surrounded by myth and mystery, some of it ominous, some of it symbolizing wisdom and prudence. Take this quiz to delve deeper into what makes this creature so fascinating.

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