North American Great Horned Owl

Latin Name Bubo virginianus
Class Aves
Order Strigiformes
Family Strigidae
IUCN status Least concern
Habitat Grasslands, deserts, wetlands, forests,urban areas
Distribution From the Artic south throughout North America

General Information

Long, ear-like tufts, a yellow eyed stare and a deep hooting voice it is the classic owl of children’s stories.

The Great Horned Owl is a powerful, nocturnal predator and will hunt species larger than itself but its main prey is small mammals (raccoons, rabbits), birds and reptiles.

They nest in tree hollows, caves or abandoned nests and the monogamous pair have 1 to 5 eggs. These owls are fiercely protective of their nests and have been known to attack humans who venture too close to the nest.

Fun Fact

The male is smaller than the female and has a softer hoot.

Keeper Notes

Royal (female 1993) is at present on her own. We have tried males with her but she has beaten a few up or will not allow them to feed! We think in ‘middleage’ she prefers her own company