Q:

Do owls hibernate?

A:

Quick Answer

Owls do hibernate during the winter season. The exception is the snowy owl, which migrates to warmer areas when winter comes around.

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Do owls hibernate?
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Full Answer

Similar to bears and other mammals that hibernate, owls store up body fat to make it through the winter without eating. During the fall months, the owls begin consuming more food and finding a suitable den that is safe from predators. When winter hits, the birds go into true hibernation. During hibernation, their core temperature drops, and their heartbeat slows dramatically. During this deep sleep, they do not eat, and their bodies use fat to stay alive. Some owls will waken from hibernation if danger is present. This happens when a predator penetrates the den or comes too close to the owl.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    Which animals are predators of owls?

    A:

    Many owls are apex predators, meaning that healthy adults have no natural predators in the wild. Some species, such as the burrowing owl, face predation by hawks, badgers and foxes. Adult great horned owls have no natural enemies.

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  • Q:

    Why do owls only come out at night?

    A:

    Most owls only come out at night because they use this time to hunt for their prey. Owls hunt for small animals such as mice, insects and birds, which come out of hiding and are more active in the dark. In order to stay alive, all owls must learn to become quick, skillful hunters.

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  • Q:

    Are owls carnivores or omnivores?

    A:

    Owls are carnivores; they are not omnivores. Owls mostly feed on small mammals such as rabbits and rodents as well as birds and insects. Some owl species focus on fish. The snowy owl loves lemmings and may consume more than 1,600 per year, or three to five daily.

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  • Q:

    What are the predators of the great gray owl?

    A:

    Great horned owls, martens and wolverines are known predators of juvenile great gray owls, while the Eurasian eagle owl is the only known predator of adults. Such attacks on full-grown birds are rare, as the giant great gray is the longest owl species in the world.

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