snowy owl

Ed Hughes

Birders may catch a glimpse of more snowy owls this winter, as more than a dozen have already been spotted throughout Rhode Island since Thanksgiving. Typically, only a few snowy owls are seen throughout the state this time of year. 


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A University of Rhode Island professor says the state is seeing an unprecedented number of snowy owls this year.

The snowy owl lives in the Arctic, but when its population explodes and there is stiff competition for food, many fly south. That’s what’s happened this year, where sightings of the owl have been seen as far south as Bermuda. University of Rhode Island ecology professor Peter Paton said Rhode Island has received 15 reports of sightings.