March 3, 1806; seen on Kooskooskee (Clearwater) River, but described at Fort Clatsop, Oregon.
A large owl, varying in color from nearly white (in Arctic) to dark brown and gray. Mottled and streaked below, setting off the white throat; prominent, widely spaced ear tufts; yellow eyes. Length: 25 in (64 cm); Wingspan: 4.6 ft (1.4 m).
Series of low, sonorous, far-carrying hoots, hoo, hoo-hoo, hoo, hoo, with second and third notes shorter than the others.
Forests, deserts, open country, swamps, and even city parks.
Resident throughout North America south of tree line.
The largest and best known of the common owls, the great horned owl preys on a wide variety of creatures, including grouse and rabbits as well as beetles, lizards, frogs, and skunks.