Saturday, March 31, 2007

There is a difference between girls and boys

OK, remember this is a family friendly blog. We're talking about birds here. Specifically the Snowy Owls. Can you tell which bird is female and tell me why?

OK, let me help you out. Cindy Palmatier is holding the female Snowy named Anna and I'm holding Ghost who is male. The adult male has less barring and as he gets older the barring gets lighter and he may even turn all white in time.


The female, as in all birds of prey, is larger. Anna is almost a whole pound heavier than Ghost. Her wing span is a little larger and she's a little taller. She's a little bulkier also. Anna is about 9 years old and Ghost is about 4.

Todays pictures were taken at The Great Alaskan Sportsman Show. I'll have more pictures tomorrow. Click here to see more of today with the Snowy's.

7 comments:

Duncan said...

What was Ghost telling you in that middle picture Dave?

Cindy said...

I was going to comment on the same thing.. looks like Ghost is trying to get your attention.. and wow, an 8 yr. old snowy- they're both beautiful!

(Cindy, who has forgot her password again!)

Dave said...

I think he said "Looks at those good looking girls behind us". :)

LauraHinNJ said...

Nice looking birds. I'm wondering why snowy owls are different from other raptors in that you can (sort of) tell the male from the female. Do you know why that is?

Dave said...

No I don't know Laura. I've read all types of books, the internet, studies, etc. and none of them tell a reason why. Their markings vary a lot from bird to bird, but no reason why the female has more barring than the male.

LauraHinNJ said...

Maybe it's that the females are more cryptic so they're better hidden on the nest? Assuming she does most of the sitting, of course. I don't know that either!

Dave said...

Their colors and markings are for camouflage. But why specifly the female has more barring I don't know. She does spend most of her time at the nest. But when it's not mateing season, they both spend a lot of time sitting and watching.