This owl needs a name – and you can vote on what it should be

The barred owl will live in Eden Prairie.
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Does this owl look more like a Whisper? How about a Sage? Maybe a Star?

Those are the finalists for Eden Prairie's newest resident, a young barred owl that's living at the city's Outdoor Center after permanently injuring its wrist earlier this winter.

The city had asked for name suggestions and nearly 200 people responded. It's been narrowed down to three finalists, and the city is asking people to vote for their favorite (you can do that here).

Here are the explanations behind each name:

  • Whisper: Because owls are known for silent flight.
  • Sage: An owl represents wisdom.
  • Star: The owl lives on the banks of Staring Lake.

You can read the suggestions that didn't make the final cut here.

More on barred owls

Barred owls live in the dense forested areas of eastern Minnesota, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources says. The bird looks similar to a great horned owl, but it’s smaller and doesn’t have tufts on its ears – also, it has dark eyes, while every other owl in Minnesota has yellow eyes.

You can tell a barred owl by it’s distinctive hooting, which sounds like “who cooks for you, who cooks for you-all,” as well as its “eerie wails and screeches,” the DNR says.

Another fun fact about the barred owl: its right ear is higher than its left ear. These angles help the bird pinpoint the location of its prey (usually mice, squirrels, rabbits, birds, frogs, fish and crayfish).

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