British Columbia Outdoor Wilderness Guide
Description - This large, white owl has a rounded
head and yellow eyes. Both sexes of the Snowy Owl have
dark bars and spots although they are heavier on the larger
female; old males may be pure white. This usually silent
bird will sometimes utter a shrill whistle and hoarse
croak on breeding grounds.
Distribution - The snowy owl breeds in northern Alaska
and in northernmost Canada; winters are spent throughout
Canada and in northern United States. Snowy Owls prefer
open country such as tundra, dunes, marshes, fields, plains
and airports in the winter.
- The Snowy Owl depends on lemmings for their major food
source. However, the lemming population fluctuates from
year to year so when the supply gets too low, the snowy
owl will migrate south in great numbers. 5-8 white eggs
are laid in a nest lined with feathers, mosses, and lichens
which is placed on the open tundra.