Monday, February 18, 2013

 

A SNOWY OWL!

Last Thursday, Shawn Steele called to say that he had a snowy owl resting in the pine trees in the backyard.  Shawn lives about a mile or so from where our house is located.  Yes, all his descriptions proved that indeed the critter was a snowy owl. 


Snowy Owls are residents of the Arctic Tundra, and really only come down to West Virginia during "irruptive "years (times when food is scarce and they migrate south for the winter). When they do visit WV, they can be found more commonly  in high elevations with big open areas, such as Canaan Valley.





We tend to think of owls as night hunters, but snowy owls-occasional winter visitors to West Virginia-hunt during the day, in accordance with their daylight hunting habits in the far north, where darkness is almost non-existent during the arctic summer.  As winter visitors, snowy owls are often found around open fields, again in accordance with tundra conditions where trees don't grow. 

Shawn had encountered a bird that I have not seen in the wild.  I HAVE MY EYES OPEN!

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