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"Phantom of the Northwoods"

Great Gray Owl woodcarving by Jim Ramsdell

The Great Gray Owl is the largest owl in North America. This is due to its large and lofty feather plumage. It is far less in body size and weight than the Great Horned Owl, so the Great Gray predominately feeds on smaller rodents such as voles, shrews and mice. They often hunt during daylight and have a well-honed talent for seizing their prey under thick layers of snow and ice, and can hunt by sight or ear alone. They can be seen perching or hovering above the snow, listening for rodents in their tunnels below the surface, then plunging through the crust to grab their prey, rarely coming up empty handed.

In the exhibit the wise owl represents Jimís use of recycled and alternatively gathered woods and solar power in the creation of all the exhibit sculptures. Viewing the backside of the owl and the base reveal the weathered and rough-sawn edges of the basswood retrieved from an old barn near Ashland, Wisconsin.
 

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