A large owl found circumpolar in the northern hemisphere. Similar in size to the Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus), the plumage of the snowy owl is primarily white. Males have some light barring or spots of dusky brown. Females and juvenile owls show much more brown barring and spots with some females having only the face and back of neck pure white. Females are significantly larger than males. The ear tufts of this owl are indistinguishable but present.
The eyes seem small for an owl but the brilliant golden irises are striking against the white plumage. The beak and talons are dark in color with long, white feathers nearly covering both. The feathers of the snowy owl are incredibly insulative for the extreme weather conditions of the artic. This species has both extremely acute vision and hearing. Often seen hunting during daylight, this species can visually locate prey at great distances. But excellent hearing allows the snowy owl to acoustically locate prey through deep snow. This species is mostly crepuscular.
Meet our resident Snowy Owls: