“We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of animals,” the great nature writer Henry Beston wrote in his lovely century-old meditation on otherness and the web of life. “In a world older and more complete than ours they move finished and complete, gifted with extensions of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear.”

In the century since, we have come to unravel some of the wonders of the non-human sensorium — from the tetrachromatic vision of bees to the choral communication of migrating birds to the magnificent eye of the scallop. But few animal sensoria are more marvelously other than the ability of owls to see with sound, partway between synesthesia and advanced mathematical computation.