From: Karla Bloem
International Owl Center
Snowy owls have arrived in our area! There have been two in Winona that I know of (one is now an owl pancake, as it was run over on Riverview Drive). The other one showed up at Jefferson Elementary School, was pestered by people, and relocated to Prairie Island. It was unfortunately found dead and brought to the International Owl Center. We will later dissect it and make it into a specimen for the center. It was quite thin and had an injury to one foot. Snowy owls have also been seen in Trempealeau and Brice Prairie.
I assume with the influx of snowy owls, people may be especially interested to know that the International Owl Center is holding our Minnesota Neighbor Weekend this weekend (December 9-10) where residents of Winona, Fillmore and Houston counties get free admission to the owl center. This is a perfect excuse to come and see our live owls, our specimens (including a mounted snowy owl and a snowy owl wing and tail that visitors may touch) and learn more about why snowy owls come south in large numbers during some years. We will have programs at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. each day. These programs aren’t focused on snowy owls, but we will certainly discuss them with visitors. The programs do, however, include a flying Eurasian eagle owl and our barn owl is now flying short distances too!