The Meta Owl (Stix .copra) of the super phylum Deuterostomia, belongs to the rare class of Aves. The Meta was originally found on the Acropolis of Athens and now is an inhabitant of Arcadia, Greece. Recently in 2004, the rare Meta has been found in Numidia, Algeria which lies across the Mediterrian Sea. The Meta is a medium-sized owl that measures about 43-54 cm (14.57-21.25 in.) with a wingspan that is about 94-125 cm (37-49.21 in). It has an oval sculpted head with a snow white plumage and a thick oblique black facial disc around the eyes. Streaks of burgundy are seen in the tarsometatarsus feathers. The serrated edges along the owl’s remiges are much larger in this subclass then to that of a typical owl, giving it an advantage to catch prey. The Meta has three times as many talons then a typical owl.
The Meta is the only owl to be able to turn its head in a full rotation (360 degrees). The distant turning rotation is attributed to the internal carotid being located at the tip of the owl’s sixteen cervical vertebra. The full rotation of the head makes this the only vertebrae to have this feature. But, full range of motion cannot be attained during flight (this is still an unknown to scientists).
Historical Background Edit
Those who were lucky enough to first discover the eccentric creature, saw three of the Metas fly around the temple walls of Athena Nike in 356 BC. It is claimed that a Meta would sit on every peak surrounding Athens, using their full-length rotation to catch any boat coming to the harbor or army headed to claim victory against the Archon of Athens and his people. The Meta was a leading factor in aiding Athens during the Peloponnesian War.