Even the most beautiful things can have a dark side. The ghost like Snowy Owls are unmistakable with their white plumage that echoes their arctic origins where they nest on the tundra. They are patient hunters that perch and wait for their prey before soaring off in silent pursuit. They have keen eyesight and hearing, perfect for finding prey under thick vegitation and snow. With a 5′ wing span and thick feathers to dampen noise they are perfect for a stealth attack. Even though their breeding grounds are in the far north, they are frequent migrants to Canada. Unlike most owls which are nocturnal, the Snowy Owls are diurnal hunting both day and night. This explains an appetite of over 1,600 lemmings a year. I was recently able to take advantage of the Snowy Owl’s winter migration south and spent 2 amazing days with these spectacular birds up in Collingwood. Thanks to David Hemminngs of Nature’s Photo Adventures for setting up the Owl adventure and Len Silvester of TTL Photo for being such an amazing guide. When I stepped out of Len’s Jeep at first light the -10C temperature melted away as I thought I’d stepped into a National Geographic photo shoot with other members on the trip from Norway, Rochester and Ottawa. Both Sybil and Victoria were willing models. With over 2,000 pictures to sort through I think I have a few keepers.
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