Scientific Classification

Order Strigiformes
Family Strigidae
Genus Bubo
Class Aves
Scientific Classification Bubo scandiacus

Other Names

Harfang des neiges (French)

Snowy Owl Description

  • The snowy owl is likely to eat 7 to 12 mice each day. It captures 1,600 lemmings per year.
  • The owl competes with many other birds such as great horned owl, golden owl, gyrfalcon, glaucous gulls, golden eagle, peregrine falcon, rough-legged hawk, common raven, Eurasian eagle owl, ermine

Size & Weight

  • BODY-LENGTH: 52–71 cm (20–28 in)
  • WEIGHT: 1.6 to 3 kg (3.5 to 6.6 lb)
  • WINGSPAN: 125–150 cm (49–59 in)
snowy owl
Snowy Owl ©www.creaseymahannaturepreserve.org

Habitat

Tundra, Great Plains

Range

Eurasia, Alaska, Canada, Texas, Georgia

Diet

Lemmings, deer mice, marmots, rabbits, prairie dogs, raccoons, hares, muskrats, moles, squirrels, rats, pheasants, shorebirds, grebes, songbirds, ducks, gulls, grouse, seabirds, weasels, wading birds, geese

Number of Eggs

3 – 11 eggs

snowy owl
Snowy Owl with her chicks ©www.burkemuseum.org

Eggs Size

  • LENGTH: 2.2 in (5.7 cm)
  • WIDTH: 1.8 in (4.5 cm)

Breeding Season

May to June

Incubation Period

32 days

Nestling Period

18–25 days

Sexual Maturity

3 – 5 years

Population

290,000

Lifespan

9 years

Speed

  • AVERAGE: 30 miles per hour (48 km/hr)
  • MAXIMUM: 50 miles per hour (80 km/hr)

Predators

Arctic foxes, jaegers, gray wolves, corvids, dogs

Sounds

pyee-pyee, prek-prek, krek-krek

Behavior

Nocturnal

Conservation Status

Least Concern