The owl, like many other birds, is steeped in legend, but among raptors it is especially abundant.
Ingesting owl parts was considered to improve eyesight. England cooked owl eggs to ash and added them to a potion. Indian folklore suggested eating owl eyeballs directly.
Apaches thought owl dreams brought death. If a boreal owl didn't respond to your whistle, the Cree thought you were dying.
Some cultures valued owls. Australian Aborigines revere owls, female spirits. The Kwakiutl thought that killing owls killed people's souls.
Owls symbolize wisdom. The "wise old owl" figure from an old English nursery rhyme says that we should all learn to listen more than talk.
White owls—the most elusive—are connected with witchcraft. Greeks and Romans thought witches could change into owls and drink baby blood.
Owls hooted to warn about witches in various civilizations. In the Middle Ages, many owls were slaughtered.
Many myths sprang from the owl's nighttime activity, but its incredible neck rotation was even made into a myth.