Jim Walling has sent us some truly outstanding Snowy Owl photographs. The rest of us can only hope to ever get shots like these!
Male Snowy Owls are almost pure white.
Females and juveniles have the dark bars and spots, with the heaviest markings on immature birds.
According to Lillian Stokes, “this is a clear Snowy Owl irruption year, although not for the usual reason of their food source, lemmings, having a population crash. There were an abundance of lemmings during this breeding season, leading to now an abundance of young Snowy Owls who cannot compete with adults for food on their wintering grounds, so these owls head south.”
They have been recorded as far south as Kansas and Missouri this winter, and birders in the Calgary area are putting in many hours on country roads to join in the Snowy Owl bonanza. Our Snowy Owl Sightings page is currently the most popular one on the blog, and it’s updated with each reported sighting.
Posted by Pat Bumstead