A baby owl sleeping face down looks unreal and like some unfortunate incident has occurred. Their legs stick straight out and they lie flat.
When the picture above went viral on Twitter thanks to Mark Rees (pic.twitter.com/dfKii2JtS8) nobody could believe that this was true. I mean I totally get it how did we not know that a baby owl sleeping face down was totally normal?
The way a baby owl sleeps is funny and unusual due to their heavy heads. Baby owls sleep face down as they cannot hold their heads up due to the weight, just like human babies.
Even if on a branch a baby owl will slump over, gripping on with their talons and they do not fall off as their feet remain closed.
A sleeping baby owl does not always lie face down as sometimes they lean against the sides of the nest or a sibling.
However when very young owls will usually lie face down as they have not developed strong enough neck muscles to hold up their incredibly heavy heads
Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology have discovered that owls have REM sleep, which is the sleep that we have when we dream. I wonder what baby owls would dream about!
As the owls get older they spend less time in REM sleep, just like humans.
A young owl doesn’t fall out of the tree while it snoozes, because its back toe, the hallux, holds onto the branch. The hallux will not open or let go until the bird bends its leg. Still, before they can fly, most owlets explore and often end up on the ground,
Baby owls lying down are just so adorable and make them look so helpless, not like they will grow up to be fantastic birds of prey.
Owl babies are tiny compared to the size they can grow. Once grown a snowy owl can be 2.5 feet tall but starts life as a helpless baby and only 2.5 inches long.
This baby owl sleeping face down does not look that comfortable, squashed against its siblings and the jagged wood.
Credit: Ken Bosma
When owlets sleep they do not like to be disturbed and can have many short naps. Once the baby owls get a bit older they can support their heads and tend to lean against something to help support them.
I hope you enjoyed this fun article about baby owls sleeping face down.