Majestic, powerful and hauntingly silent in flight, the Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) embodies the enigmatic nature of Canada's Arctic region. It is one of the largest owl species and contrary to common belief, can see equally well day or night—an ability that is particularly important for this northern resident that must hunt under the midnight sun of the Arctic summer.
While the snowy owl's beautiful plumage may be the first thing that catches your eye when looking at the coin, this bird of prey's eyes are among its most distinctive features. Surprisingly, those cat-like, bright yellow eyes are similar in weight and size to the human eye; but unlike other birds, the snowy owl's eyes face forward to allow for a heightened depth perception. Since their eyes cannot move freely within their sockets, owls have a flexible neck that enables them to turn their head 270 degrees in either direction.
Composition 99.99% pure silver
Weight (g) 31.39
Diameter (mm) 38
Face value 20 dollars
Artist Douglas Laird (reverse), Susanna Blunt (obverse)