most other birds barn owls have wings with a
surface area that is extremely large relative to
their body weight. These long, large wings are
also broad and rounded and the combination of
these features allow them to fly at relatively
low speeds with apparantly little effort.
The wings of
the barn owl have another very important adaption
- the leading edge and the outer part of the
trailing edge of thier flight feathers have
stiffened barbs and the upper surfaces are downy
- these special feathers provide silent flight.
Silent flight is important for two reasons,
firstly their prey cannot hear the barn owl
approaching and secondly, the barn owl's
sensitive hearing is not compromised by unwanted