Detroit is Being Invaded by White Snowy Owls from the Arctic

February 5, 2020 at 4:38 pm

The striking black and white snowy owl is making an unusual visit to Detroit from the arctic tundra in northern Canada

Majestic snow owls have been spotted in recent weeks throughout Michigan, even as far south as metro Detroit.

These fluffy white owls have come all the way from the Arctic regions of northern Canada and Eurasia. Even though snow owls migrate for the winter, it’s unusual they travel this far south. It’s almost unheard of for them to cross the Canadian border, until the last couple of years.


There photos snapped on cell phones are going viral on social media;

This happens when there’s a population boom up north and the older owls chase the younger away so they can save the limited prey for themselves, says Ava Landgraf with the Detroit Audubon Society. Their diet consists of lemmings, mice, rats, rabbits, and sometimes other birds.

“The younger, kind of less-established, are kind of pushed south to the less desirable areas,” Landgraf said.

Landgraf says the arctic white owls tend to like wide open fields, similar to the frozen plains from which they came.

“One of the best places you can see them is around airports because airports have those really big, flat areas, kind of cement-type areas too, which kind of mimmicks the rocky, tundra areas that they like,” Landgraf said.

So, the next time you have a flight into Detroit, don’t be surprised if you see this beautiful bird.