Snowy owl and pellet regurgitation:
I love the way you animated the pictures in series. Beautiful bird, beautiful pictures.
That's an interesting, if slightly disgusting, series of images. So, for those of us that don't know, what is the owl doing and why?
my gallery of so-so photos
Thanks, Kerry !
The owls regularly regurgitate , in the form of usually compact oval shaped bundles of undigestible materials..... consisting of hair, bones, feathers, etc. from their prey.
Other raptors such as hawks, etc., do the same thing.
In the field, I have noticed from experience , that when a perching Snowy owl , such as in this case, brings up a pellet.... it may often be a sign that it is ready to take off...perhaps to hunt once again.
When I saw this bird regurgitate....I was immediately at the ready , for possible flight ....which I did luckily capture.
This winter is witness to a very large southward movement of these birds, especially in eastern North America. This can repeat itself in sort of irregular cycles, every few years. The reasons being , probable high fledgling success in the far north and / or a plunge in the population of its favorite prey.....the lemming.
It looks like hundreds...if not thousands of photographers, will be very busy through the winter
P.S.,....my collection of Snowys over the years, can be seen at: