The owl is a predator which is most often seen at night in the countryside along riverbanks, paths, field hedgerows and roadsides, where it hunts for prey.
As nocturnal predators, owls have the sharpest night vision of all animals. They also have excellent hearing and can locate prey just by listening. Because their thick feathers have soft edges, flight is silent, allowing them to pounce on their prey without warning.
In Celtic folklore the owl was a guide to and through the Underworld, and was often associated with witchcraft. Throughout the Celtic nations the owl was feared for its connection to death, its haunting voice was reminiscent of the lament of mourning. To encounter an owl at midnight could be a prophecy of loss or bereavement.