- Great Horned Owl, "Bubo"
- Bubo virginianus
- Bubo is a great horned owl. His scientific
name is Bubo virginianus. We know Bubo is a male by his
size (males are smaller than females) and by his behavior (females
are more aggressive than males). He stands about 19 inches tall
and weighs about 2.5 pounds.
- Great horned owls, unlike other owls,
are active during the day and at night. They pretty much go wherever
they please, whenever they please. They represent ultimate strength
and power among North American raptors (birds of prey). It is
their size, fearless attitude, and ability to take whatever pleases
them from other birds, like nests and food, which give them the
reputation, "Tiger of the Skies." Pound for pound,
they are one of the most capable predators on earth!
- In 2001, while likely hunting for rodents
at night along a dark Tallahassee road, Bubo was the unfortunate
victim of an automobile collision. Each year, St. Francis Wildlife
receives hundreds of nocturnal animals who are temporarily blinded
and confused by a vehicle's approaching headlights or just fly
too low over a road in focused pursuit of their prey.
- One of bubo's wings was so badly damaged
that it had to be amputated. After several weeks of TLC in our
animal hospital, it was decided that he would become part of
our Wild Classroom education program.
- Bubo now travels to schools and takes
part in public outreach events to teach people about our magnificent
great horned owls and about the dangers that all nocturnal animals
-- owls, raccoons, opossums, rabbits, and foxes -- face on the
roads at night from speeding cars.
- One way to help these animals is to watch
out for their shining eyes reflecting your car's bright headlights,
to drive slowly and dim your lights if you do see an animal on
the road so that he can fly or run back to safety and continue
to live wild and free!