• Snowy Owl

    Common NameSnowy Owl
    Scientific NameBubo scandiacus
    Type of ReportOut-of-Season
    Date of Observation05/17/2017
    MediaOther Documentation of Observation
    Number Observed1
    Reporting Observer's NameRonald Payne
    Mailing Address496 Weybridge St.
    Middlebury, Vermont 05753
    United States
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    EmailEmail hidden; Javascript is required.
    Date Completed05/17/2017
    Latitude of Observation43.869382
    Longitude of Observation-73.238552
    Place NameRichville Rd.
    Vermont eBird Checklist URLebird.org
    Time of Day11:20 AM
    Length of Time Observed15 Minutes
    Maximum Estimated Distance from Bird (in feet)30 ft. (driving under power pole in car).
    Minimum Estimated Distance from Bird (in feet)500 ft.
    Noteworthy Weather Conditions


    Optical Equipment Used for Observation

    Pentax 8x42 DCF binoculars.

    Observer’s Previous Acquaintance With This or Similar Species

    This is my 27th time observing a Snowy Owl.

    I certify that that attachments included with this report were captured during this observation event​​.
    Description of Habitat

    Broad hay and corn fields flanking both sides of the road with nearby wet swales with cattails. Bobolinks and Savannah Sparrows were heard singing from the fields, Yellow Warbler and Common Yellowthroats singing from the wet spots.

    Behaviors Observed

    Perching. It frequently looked at this observer but did not seem stressed and never flushed.

    Description of Vocalizations


    Verbal Narrative & Description of Observation

    Driving west down Richville Rd. the bird was immediately obvious perched on top of a power pole. I pulled into Webster Rd. and viewed the bird from there. Then drove back east to farm field access closer to the bird to take pictures.

    Relative Size & Shape

    Judging from the power equipment it was perched on, bigger than a Red-tailed Hawk.


    Large, round mostly white with some sparse black spots on forehead and back of head. Yellow eyes.

    Feet & Bill

    Bill hidden by feathers on face the entire time I viewed the bird. Feet, large completely covered with white feathers, with large pale talons.

    Upper Back

    White with limited black feather tips.

    Lower Back & Rump

    Not visible.


    White with extensive black spots on feather tips on the coverts.

    Breast, Belly, Flanks, Under Tail Coverts



    Blunt, rounded tail, pure white.

    IMPORTANT: What similar species were eliminated when making the identification and how was this bird different?

    Plumage rules out all local standard plumaged owls. Yellow eyes rule out leucistic/albino Barred Owl as well as Barn Owl. Size & bulkiness of the bird rule out arbarent plumaged Short-eared Owl.

    This report was written from notes taken:Immediately After

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