Thesnowy owl(Bubo scandiacus) is awhite owlnative to the arctic regions of North America and the cold areas of Europe and Asia. As theeagle owl, also thesnowy owlhas sexual dimorphism. Males have predominantly white plumage while females have more black feathers. The young specimens have black feathers which, with maturity, become white.
Almost allOwlsI'm nocturnal animals, they sleep during the day and hunt at night. Thesnowy owlit is an exception because it sleeps at night and is active during the day, especially in summer.
Until recently, thesnowy owlwas considered the only member of thegenus "Nyctea scandiaca", in 2002, after sequencing particular stretches of cytochrome B mtDNA, the close correlation betweenOwlsof the genus Bubo eEagle owl, so its scientific name becameBubo scandiacus.
Snowy owl: nutrition, characteristics and where it lives. What you should know about owls.
It is distinguished by its yellow eyes and black beak. It has a characteristic white plumage. It is 52 to 72 cm long with a wingspan of 135-150 cm, there is no shortage of particularly large specimens that reach a wingspan of 177 cm! THEsnowy owlsthey can reach a weight of between 1.6 and 3 kg.
Why are owl eyes so magnetic?
I don't know about you, but when I observe an owl (during a joke ofbirdwatchingor just in the picture) rest literallycapturedfrom the look of this animal. THEOwlsthey have glassy eyes, the secret is not the color that insnowy owlis particularly noticeable. The "secret" is the size. THEOwlshavevery large eyesin proportion to the size of the garment. In fact, the eyes of theowlthey are approximately the same size as a man's eyes.
Another peculiarity of theowl eyesit is immobility. The eyes are fixed. This "deficit" is compensated by another anatomical feature: the head of theowlit can rotate up to an angle of 270 °.
What does the snowy owl eat
Thesnowy owlit feeds on small mammals, fish or other birds. Among the most hunted prey: hares, lemmings (they are rodents), mice, foxes…. The most active specimens in hunting are the young in growth.
The female lays between 3 and 14 eggs. The deposition takes place after days like this, in owl nest, very different sized chicks can be found. The incubation lasts from 33 to 37 days. The male procures the prey and supports the female during the hatching and in the first weeks after hatching.
The little onesOwlsthey start flying after 50 days and after 2 months they are already able to autonomously catch prey! At this stage, isnowy owlsthey eat a lot! They consume at least 5 meals a day so as to go from 50 g to 1.4 kg. Within a month, 9 little owls can eat up to 1300 small rodents such as lemmings which are their main food source. In practice, aadult snowy owlhunts the same amount of food over the course of a year!
Arctic tundra: its natural habitat
In the food chain ofarctic tundra, thesnowy owloccupies, with the fox, the highest step, that ofpredator. In practice, there is no other animal that can hunt the owl. Only rarely asnowy owlfinds himself preying on a newborn fox.
If you think the life of theeagle owlit's simple you're wrong. Even if it occupies the top step of the food chain ofarctic tundra, we are talking about very particular habitats. If the male owl dies or is unable to get enough food, the entire brood is bound to succumb.
How old does a snowy owl live?
The longevity of asnowy owlit is about 9 years old in nature. Specimensbred in captivitythey can even reach 32 years!
If the movie “Finding Nemo” made the clownfish famous, thesnowy owlhe became famous for the figure ofHedwing, Harry Potter's owl in Hogwarts school. The success ofHarry Pottermade the survival of theOwls. Many fans of the series were encouraged topurchase of Owlsand some poachers, in defiance of species protection laws, have supported the illegal sale.
Thesnowy owlis listed in Annex I of the Birds Directive of the European Union. This means that it is forbidden to destroy, mine or capture this species. Transport is also forbidden (both alive and dead!). It is absolutely forbidden to destroy, remove or even just touch the eggs or an owl nest. The directive banned thesale and purchase of the snowy owl.
Please note: unlike theeagle owlwhich is present in Italy as a migratory bird, the snowy owl never reaches our country. It lives only in the far north of Europe.