The Great Gray Owl (Strix nebulosa) feeds almost exclusively on small mammals such as Lemmings and Voles. The populations of these mammals crash on a cyclic basis, forcing these magnificent predators to leave their home range in search of food. We are fortunate to host these large raptors in the Ottawa area during these events. It would seem that the winter of 2012-2013 will be one of those times as indicated by the discovery of this gorgeous female on December 29th. We were also able to locate a smaller male in the same vicinity on December 30th.
Captured near Dunrobin, Ontario. © Todd Weeks