Our Education Birds: Bubo

Bubo is a Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus). She came to us as an orphaned chick in the spring of 1999. We tried to hack her out twice, and were unsuccessful both times; Bubo refused to venture far from the hack box or eat on her own. Even though she's an adult, Bubo still exhibits immature behavior. Her weight varies from about three and a half to four pounds.

Bubo is an active participant in our educational programming. She often surprises audiences (and volunteers!) by egesting pellets during programs. "Pellets" consist of the bones, fur, and other indigestible matter from a recent meal. Though it’s sticky and unpleasant when it first comes out of her mouth, pellets provide an excellent illustration of the digestion process.

Raptors have a third eyelid on each eye called a nictitating membrane; you can see them in this picture of Bubo to the left. The nictitating membrane clears the eye of debris as well as helps protect the lens from struggling prey. Other predators such as sharks and alligators have nictitating membranes, as well.

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Bubo's Image Gallery:

Bubo up close
Bubo at Cheat Lake Elementary
Bubo spreads her wings
Bubo at Jackson's Mill
Bubo up close - fierce!
Bubo in her flight cage
Bubo in the loft
Bubo and Jesse
Bubo and Jesse - twins


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