photo by Anthony VanSchoor
I knew there was a reason I like Facebook! Besides seeing photos of my friends’ grandchildren and finding recipes I will never make, the other day up popped a photo of a Snowy Owl. At first, I thought, “WOW someone sure was lucky to get that shot.” But as I started to read the post, I found out that she was seen at a nearby friend’s farm, about a mile from my home. I never even knew they were in our area. The more I thought about it, the more I wanted to know about this majestic owl. This photo, taken by Anthony VanSchoor, appeared on the Howard County Bird Club’s Facebook page. From what I have gathered, the owl was sighted on the farm and members were contacted. No one could find the owl that first day, but Anthony went back the next day and there she was! I contacted the club to get permission to use this photo and Anthony was very gracious in letting me share it with you. If you’re on Facebook, check out all the different sightings that our community has posted. All within a mile of my home!
I think I fell in love with the Snowy Owl back when I listened to the entire Harry Potter series about 6 years ago while driving to and from work. The description J.K. Rowling gave of Harry’s owl had me looking them up and that was it for me! I started reading more about them and found out that the females have this salt and pepper look while the adult males are pure white. Click here for The Cornell Lab of Ornithology site to learn more about Bubo scandiacus, otherwise known as the Snowy Owl. While they are not on the endangered list, they are listed as vulnerable since their numbers are decreasing.
If you are interested in joining the Howard County Bird club they have a web site you can visit to find out more information. Even if you don’t want to join, the photos alone are worth checking them out. And if you’ve seen one of these majestic birds, let them know. They are looking for details of sightings.
I would also love to hear if you have ever seen one of these beautiful owls. Leave a comment below. I, for one, will be keeping my eyes peeled and my cell phone handy! Wish me luck! Happy New Year!
by Stephanie Fleming, Behnke’s Vice President