Snowy owl on the roof of a beachfront house, Seabrook Beach, N.H.
For many winters I’ve been keeping an eye out – and sometimes actually trying to find – a snowy owl who would pose for me. Today was my lucky day.
Snowy owls, Bubo scandiacus, live far north of here but visit sometimes in winter when there are too many owls competing for too few lemmings and other tasty mammals in the Arctic tundra.
What a beautiful bird!
The regal Snowy Owl is one of the few birds that can get even non-birders to come out for a look. This largest (by weight) North American owl shows up irregularly in winter to hunt in windswept fields or dunes, a pale shape with catlike yellow eyes.
More from Cornell Lab of Ornithology…
- Look for Snowy Owls sitting on or near the ground in wide-open areas. They often perch on rises such as the crests of dunes, or on fenceposts, telephone poles, and hay bales. When they fly they usually stay close to the ground.
- In winter, look for Snowy Owls along shorelines of lakes and the ocean, as well as on agricultural fields and airport lands.
The Owl Pages: Owls in mythology and culture.
Fun with… Animal Symbolism: The Meaning of the Owl. Owl Spirit Animal.
It was the summer of hawks for me. Will it be the winter of owls?
November afternoon, North Hampton. iPhone photo from a walk the other day.
The figurine at Betsey Cotton’s grave in Little River Cemetery is still there.
We had our first snow last night, crystalline flurries all blown away by today’s gusty north winds.
There lives the dearest freshness deep down things…
- Gerard Manley Hopkins
America, it is mid-November. Why are you turning red-and-green and glitter-silver? Why are you sparkling the velvet dark with Christmas lights? Why are you playing the jingle music?
The season’s colors are browns and grays. Let the dark come early.
The season’s sounds are geese overhead, a blasting gun in the back woods, rain turning to sleet, icy glass dropping from silver clouds.
The sounds are book pages turning, the old dog snoring in front of the fire. In the other room, hear the steam from pots lifting and dropping lids like shimmering cymbals, almost-time-for-dinner.
All in good time, all in good time.
Let the flowers die, the seeds fall, and the earth sleep.
Be quiet, be still, and get ready for grace.
Balancing rocks at Ragged Neck, Rye, with Isles of Shoals beyond.
Dear Japanese Maple In Our Front Yard,
Way to go, tree. I am impressed by your ability to hold on to your leaves through the first frosts and early cold. And then, when the other trees are bare naked, or clinging to a few crispy brown leaves, you turn on the color. And what color it is! I’m not even going to try to name it. I will just take a picture and share it with my friends. Thank you for being beautiful today.