“There shall the great owl make her nest, and lay, and hatch, and gather under her shadow:”
What makes owls so good at catching prey as they fly through the night sky? Part of the credit obviously goes to their amazing eyes that are able to see with such clarity in low-light conditions. But owls also have another design feature that allows them to sneak up on their prey without being noticed. Owls, you see, were designed to fly in virtual silence.
The authors of the book Discovery of Design point out that owls have an uneven forward fringe on their wings. Unlike the sharp, well-defined edge on most birds, the uneven fringe decreases air turbulence and produces less noise. In addition, the feathers covering the owl’s wings, body and legs are velvety soft. This helps to dampen and absorb the sound of rushing air.
Airplane designers are now exploring these features to create quieter military and commercial aircraft. Thanks to the owl, engineers are looking into a retractable brush-like fringe for airplane wings and a velvety coating on the landing gear.
In the book’s introduction, the authors point out that inventors and design engineers frequently look to nature for inspiration. But as creationists, they emphasize that the designs found in nature are not the product of evolution. Rather, the designs were embedded in the material universe by supernatural acts of creation. The purpose of these designs was not only for the benefit of living things but also so they could be discovered and put to use for the welfare of mankind.
Heavenly Father, the creation not only inspires designs that benefit mankind, they inspire us to worship our Creator! I am filled with awe as I learn more about Your creation. Amen.
D. DeYoung and D. Hobbs, Discovery of Design: Searching Out the Creator’s Secrets, pp. 9-10, 66-67 (Master Books, 2012).