Northern Spotted Owl
Scientific Name: Strix occidentalis caurina
IUCN Status: Threatened
Population estimate: Less than 50,000
Region: Northern California and
the Pacific Northwest of the United States, as well as a small number -
less than a dozen - Northern Spotted Owls are left in southern British
Habitat: Old-growth forests
Greatest threats to its continuation: Intensive logging, accelerated habitat loss and the new arrival of the Barred Owl is causing the Northern Spotted Owl’s rapid decline, an average of 3 percent per year across its range
Did you know?
The Northern Spotted Owl serves as an "indicator species" for old-growth forests, meaning scientists study it to get a larger picture of the health of the ecosystem in which it lives.
Every pair of Northern Spotted Owls needs a large amount of land for hunting and nesting, and although they do not migrate, Northern Spotted Owls may shift their ranges in response to seasonal changes, such as heavy snows, that make hunting difficult.
Northern Spotted Owls have a distinct flight pattern, involving a series of rapid wingbeats interspersed with gliding flight. This allows them to glide down silently upon their prey.
$1 from every SpeeZees Northern Spotted Owl tee supports The Wilderness Committee, wildernesscommittee.org, Canada’s largest membership-based, citizen-funded wilderness protection group and their campaign to save the Northern Spotted Owls.
If you'd like to make a donation to The Wilderness Committee click here.
...and a great everything-you-ever-needed-to-know video about the Northern Spotted Owl (thanks, Luz!).
In recent Northern Spotted Owl news...
on November 22, 2012 conservation groups hailed protection of 9.6 million acres of critical habitat for the threatened northern spotted owl across federal lands in Washington, Oregon and Northern California, but were deeply disappointed by the exclusion of all private and most state lands, resulting in a 4.2 million cut from the proposed designation.. (read more...)