Snowy Owl

Bubo scandiacus

Habitat

Snowy Owls live in Artic tundras. They have adapted to live in very cold climates and survive harsh winters.

Color Patterns and unusual Facts

Both males and females have very yellow eyerings. Males have few brown spots covering their wings and back. Females have more black spots covering their entire body, excluding their head. Chicks are a charcoal gray color and are very small.


Characteristics of males and females



  • Females are about 20% larger than males
  • Males can be completely white with no spots covering them, but females and owlets have some black scalloping on their bodies.
  • Females have a higher pitched call than the males and rarely hoot
  • Snowy Owls are monogamous (have only one spouse at a time)
  • Both males and females are highly territorial



Fun Facts


  • They have facial discs that help them ditect sounds.
  • They have a wingspan between 4 and 5 feet.
  • They are diurnal, unlike most owls, and are active during the day and the night.
  • Their diets are mostly lemmings, a small rodent.
  • When lemming populations are low, these owls can be found as far south as northern and central parts of the United States.
  • Often are seen at airports, possibly because it reminds them of the bare tundras.

Adaptations

Owls have very large eyes that give them great night vision. This allows them to hunt with accuracy during the night. They also have serrated edges on their feathers that help them silently sneak up on their prey. Snowy owls use their strong and sharp beaks to grip their prey.