great horned owl

Great Horned Owl

Bubo virginianus

CLASS Aves | ORDER Strigiformes | FAMILY Strigidae

RANGE North and South America

HABITAT Forests or wooded areas

DIET Rabbits, lizards, frogs, insects, birds and rodents

2 - 5.5 lbs

18 - 23 in

3.3 - 4.8 ft

30 - 37 days

1 – 4 eggs

IUCN Status
Least Concern
great horned owl

The great horned owl gets its name from the tufts of feathers, called plumicorns, on its head that look like horns or ears. Its feathers allow it to fly effortlessly without noisy flapping to alert its prey. Its talons can hold up to 30 pounds before its grip on an object fails.

The great horned owl's large eyes give it four times the night vision that humans have. If a human's eyes were as large as an owl's in relation to its body, people would need a head the size of a wash tub.