[mou] Unusually plumaged Great Horned Owl, Bloomington, Hennepin County

Warren Woessner WWoessner at slwip.com
Mon Jan 28 14:25:39 CST 2008

There was one at Wood Lake Nature Center some years ago that many
initially thought was a Snowy


From: mou-net-bounces at moumn.org [mailto:mou-net-bounces at moumn.org] On
Behalf Of sparky stensaas
Sent: Monday, January 28, 2008 12:10 PM
To: MN Ornithologists
Subject: Re: [mou] Unusually plumaged Great Horned Owl,
Bloomington,Hennepin County

I'm jealous! Sounds like a beautiful bird.
Dave Benson in his recent Owls of the North book describes these
'Arctic' or 'Taiga' forms of the Great Horned Owl as 'seen mainly well
to the North, but some winters they may show up as far south as the
northern tier of states...They are not albinos, or even partial albinos;
rather, like many northern creatures, they have a paler cast than their
southern relatives.'
See Christian Artuso's very cool photo of a pair of 'Arctic' Great
Horned Owls on page 25 of the book. The photo was taken in southern

Sparky Stensaas
2515 Garthus Road 
Wrenshall, MN 55797 
218.341.3350 cell 
sparkystensaas at hotmail.com
www.kollathstensaas.com <http://www.kollathstensaas.com/> 
www.stoneridgepress.com <http://www.stoneridgepress.com/> 
www.sparkyphotos.com <http://www.sparkyphotos.com/> 


	Date: Mon, 28 Jan 2008 08:33:06 -0600
	From: Doug.Kieser at clynch.com
	To: mou-net at moumn.org; mnbird at lists.mnbird.net
	Subject: [mou] Unusually plumaged Great Horned Owl, Bloomington,
Hennepin County
	Yesterday morning while birding along the Bluff Trail west of
the Old Cedar Avenue bridge I had a short encounter with an almost-white
Great Horned Owl.
	I was on the second long boardwalk (the one with watercress in
the stream) sorting through a robin flock when I thought I saw a large
white bird out of the corner of my eye.  I scanned a bit, didn't locate
this bird, and turned my attention back to the robins.  Within a few
seconds they all took flight, I looked up and saw what I felt was a
Snowy Owl land at tree-top level just up the hill from my location.  I
was wondering what a Snowy Owl was doing in these woods when it turned
its head and faced me, I could see it was actually a Great Horned Owl,
but with black on white plumage, I could only detect the slightest hint
of light brown tones.  The facial disc was pale yellow, rather than
orange, and was framed in black.  The "horns" were plainly visible and
were black.  Other than these features the bird appeared the same as an
immature Snowy Owl.  After 30 seconds or so a dogwalker came through and
the owl flew off to the east, towards Cedar Avenue.  In flight, the owl
seemed nearly all white, the only visible dark markings were those on
the underwings.  
	Doug Kieser


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