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Snowy Owl

Bubo scandiacus
"Kodiak"

Kodiak came to us in 2017 when the centre opened as his owner couldn't look after him anymore. He is still very young so it will take another moult this year until his black spots disappear and he becomes a fully white snowy owl. We have been spend a lot of time getting him to fly to a glove as his balance isn't very good and we are hoping he'll be available for you to fly by the autumn.

Sponsor Kodiak

TERRITORY/LOCATION

Snowy owls are native to Arctic regions in North America and Eurasia. They winter south through Canada and northern Eurasia, with irruptions occurring further south in some years. Between 1967 and 1975, snowy owls bred on the remote island of Fetlar in the Shetland Isles north of Scotland. Females summered as recently as 1993, but their status in the British Isles is now that of a rare winter visitor to Shetland, the Outer Hebrides and the Cairngorms.

SIZE/WEIGHT

It is 52–71 cm long, with a 125–164cm wingspan. Also, these owls can weigh anywhere from 1134-2000g. Females are larger and heavier than males.

HABITAT

The Snowy Owl is a bird of Arctic tundra or open grasslands and fields. They rarely venture into forested areas. During southward movements they appear along lakeshores, marine coastlines, marshes, and even roost on buildings in cities and towns. In the Arctic, they normally roost on pingaluks (rises in the tundra).

NESTING

They nest on the ground, building a scrape on top of a mound or boulder. A site with good visibility is chosen, such as the top of a mound with ready access to hunting areas and a lack of snow.

Breeding occurs May to June, clutch sizes from 3 to 11 eggs.

LIFE EXPECTANCY

9.5 years old in the wild

28 years old in captivity

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

SCIENTIFIC CLASSIFICATION

KINGDOM

Animalia

PHYLUM

Chordata

CLASS

Aves

ORDER

Strigiformes

FAMILY

Striigidae

GENUS

Bubo

SPECIES

B. scandiacus

DIET

Snowy owl are diurnal and hunt during the day and night,

This powerful bird relies primarily on lemmings and other small rodents for food during the breeding season. They are opportunistic hunters and prey species may vary considerably, especially in winter. They feed on a wide variety of small mammals but will take advantage of larger prey like hares, rats, rabbits. Each bird must capture roughly 7 to 12 mice per day to meet its food requirement and can eat more than 1,600 lemmings per year.

DID YOU KNOW?

There is only an estimated 257,000 Snowy Owls left in the wild. Snowy Owls are endangered because when their main food source, lemmings, has a low population these rare birds fly south.

Get in touch

If you have any queries regarding your visit or would like to ask anything about our Owls please click contact us and fill in our enquiry form.

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