Predator vs. Prey: Striped Skunk vs. Great horned owl

By | February 1, 2012
From Xplor: February/March 2012

The struggle to survive isn't always a fair fight. Here's what separates nature's winners from its losers.

Heavy Weight

A great horned owl can carry away an animal equal to its own weight, but a full-grown skunk often weighs twice that.

Keen Ears

Owls can pinpoint prey in total darkness using nothing but their ears.

Stinky Spray

Skunks can squirt their stinky, blinding spray 20 feet away.

Razor-Sharp Talons

An owl’s talons have a crushing force 10 times greater than a human’s grip and can rip through an animal’s skin to crumple its spine.

Silent Feathers

Soft feathers allow an owl to swoop with total silence.

And the winner is...

A skunk’s best defense is its stinky spray, but owls can’t smell. So unless the skunk is awfully chubby, it’s owl food.

And More...

This Issue's Staff

David Besenger
Bonnie Chasteen
Chris Cloyd
Peg Craft
Brett Dufur
Les Fortenberry
Chris Haefke
Karen Hudson
Regina Knauer
Kevin Lanahan
Kevin Muenks
Noppadol Paothong
Marci Porter
Mark Raithel
Laura Scheuler
Matt Seek
Tim Smith
David Stonner
Nichole LeClair Terrill
Stephanie Thurber
Cliff White
Kipp Woods