Can Snowy Owl Be Kept As Pet? Everything You Need To Know

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  • Post last modified:April 27, 2022

Snowy Owl as a Pet

Can Snowy Owl Be Kept As Pet?

This owl species is commonly known as Snowy Owl. The scientific name of this species is Bubo scandiacus. The size of the adults is 36 inches of height and the wingspan is about 48 to 60 inches.

One can blame the fiction Harry Potter which made people believe that owls are easy to manage and having one is legal. One cannot compare having a parrot as a pet to owl as a pet. Apart from the wild life sanctuaries and zoo, its illegal to have a snowy owl in North America.

Can One Have Snowy Owl As A Pet?

It’s illegal to have a Snowy Owl as a pet in the US private ownership. This rule is been placed in 1918 by the US Fish and Wildlife Service according to the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

When It Became Illegal?

It’s illegal to have a Snowy Owl as a pet in the US private ownership. This rule is been placed by the US Fish and Wildlife Service according to the Migratory Bird Treaty Act in the year 1918.

Why Snowy Owls Don’t Make A Great Pets?

Owl like the raptors enjoy staying in solidarity and hunt solo. Birds like cockatoos and macaws love to stay in groups but owls enjoy staying alone in the forest. Thus, making them reserved. However, interact with the other owl for mating and will give birth to the owlet.

As owls are nocturnal; active at night will look out for food in the night. They capture their prey and kill them. Thus, making them inappropriate as pets. Along with the beaks, owl use their talons to hold the prey and to tear them apart into shreds to eat.

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The other characteristics of Snowy owl are its earing ability from a huge distance, its vision and its aerodynamic body. Thus, becoming a dangerous but soundless hunter.

This Snowy owl is also threatened by Raptors like Goshawks which threaten the owl, by killing them, while they are bathing. In response to that, owl will try to protect itself and its nest by counter-attack and through dive-bombing.

Snowy Owl as a Pet

1. Housing Of Snowy Owls

In zoos, sanctuary and wild life rehab, these captured owl are kept in enclosures, which area atleast 20 square feet, with tree branches, so as to resemble the wild. These enclosures of owl, have to be cleaned on daily basis.

Apart from daily cleaning the place, taking out the left food and cleaning the blood and the regurgitated pellet is not for someone with a weak heart. This specie requires animal meat like that of rodents and pigs.

Thus, finding such food and storing them in freezer is not everyone will be okay with. Owls also shed a large number of feathers, which needs to be removed while cleaning the enclosure. If any food, feathers, pellets is left in the enclosure, it could harbor a huge number of bacteria and can have an impact on the owl’s health.

2. Diet Of Snowy Owls

Out in the wild, this specie consumes birds, rodents, chickens, insects and other tiny mammals, as they are carnivorous. In Artic, they consume the Lemmings. Within a day, they require about 3-5 lemmings.

However, in enclosure they can be fed thawed mice, chickens and other mammals. Live animals can also be fed but are not preferred in captivity due to bloodshed. Within a day, around 7 to 12 mammals are required.

3. Health Issues Faced By Snowy Owls

Snowy owls are susceptible to Aspergillosis, which is a fungal infection, which could further cause loss of diet, result in depression and respiratory infection.

Snowy owls and other birds residing in the Subarctic and artic zones are more prone to such infections. These infection are seen in the summer, when the climate is humid, then in the other climate.

4. Purchasing

As buying of Owls is illegal, one can donate or provide some amount to the zoos or rehab centers. These centers and Sanctuary will take care of the food and their health. Incase these owls are wounded; rehab specialists can take care of them with the sponsored amount. Occasionally, one can visit them.

Some of the organization are:

  • National Audubon Society
  • World wildlife fund
  • Owl research Institute

Proper care, enclosure, food, health checkup, attention, training is provided to the birds by the Experts in the Adoption program. The amount sent to such rehab centers, will take care of all the above aspects.

Occasionally, one can visit them. If the rehab encourages in socializing they may also bestow the opportunity to feed the owl or to interact with them. Thus, staying in touch with such organization helps to provide better facilities for animal and bird’s care.

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