Evolutionary Theory: Why Are Owls So Bloody Wise?

In Praise of Owls
Hoot hoot!

Owls don’t get enough press, do they? Look at that little bastard above – a gorgeous creature who also creates one of the most awesome noises on Earth. Synonymous with horror movies (those bits when it’s night, there’s mist everywhere, a wolf howls, and then an owl hoots) and bedtime, owls are those wise dudes who often make you foul yourself in a cinema theatre. There’s no need to be afraid!

Another legend is owls are wise creatures. Why do they have such a reputation? Presumably, it’s because they can sit still for long periods of time as if reflecting on existence. We all know anyone who can sit still without taking a selfie every 20 seconds is a wise individual indeed, so owls go above and beyond it all. As such, we’re using our expert understanding of evolutionary theory to explain today why owls (like Nietzsche) are so wise.

Owls: Wise Beyond Their Ears!

This is the definition of wise: “Having or showing experience, knowledge, and good judgement”. As such, we can confidently claim some wise things are as follows: library assistants, farmers (muck spreading is very wise), people who wear hats during the winter, slipper wearing people, anyone who can fix a flat tyre, and pastry chefs.

Owls don’t know how to do any of those things, although they don’t really need to wear a hat as they’re, like, covered in feathers anyway. So it would be a redundant fashion statement, frankly, like those blokes who wear skinny jeans for whatever goddamn delusional reason.

This is getting off point, though; why are owls considered wise? That stoic, steely, introspective reserve is a good starting point, but then there’s also their onomatopoeic grunt: hoot. As our central hooting invention expounded upon, hooting is great. Anything that is great is pretty wise behaviour, so owls are wise by default. But, hark, lend me your ears further still!


The answer lies in the owl’s ears and skull, we believe. As the owl is able to turn its brain (and, consequently, ears) to perpendicular angles, it can block out the dross being spewed by imbeciles. Thanks to natural selection, this has ensured owls have been able to ignore imbeciles and pursue decent moral conduct uninterrupted. Good on them.

Why is this such a positive thing? Can you imagine if humans had such an ability? Imagine (all the people) sitting on the bus just after some foul smelling, half drunk, leering maniac sits down next to you and begins a verbose conversation about kebabs, naked women, and potato farming. Due to the nature of human biology, you have to sit there and engage the man thanks to the curse of polite social conduct.

If you could swivel your head 90 degrees in the other direction, and humanity had fundamental owl conduct in mind, the half drunk man would continue ranting whilst you, free from his drivel, could stare out of the window at the pretty rhododendron bushes whizzing on by. Quaint? Not really – pay attention to owls. They know the answers. It is why they are so wise.


    • You throw down a challenge like that, dude, and this will simply have to erupt into a flame war. Firstly, I will gain a foothold of superiority by calling you a noob. Now, I will destroy your argument by asserting myself with big words you have to use Google to understand their meaning!

      Actually, I can’t be bothered with that last bit. I think if you look at the owl from Disney classic Sword in the Stone, you’ll agree owls are pretty cool.

      Liked by 1 person

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