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Help develop a Bird ID tool!

Great Gray Owl


IUCN Conservation Status: Least Concern

A huge owl of the boreal forest and western mountains, the Great Gray Owl feeds on rather small rodent prey.

Merlin Bird ID app
Birds of North America Online


Typical Voice

Adult Description

  • Very large gray owl.
  • Round head without ear tufts.
  • Black and white "bowtie" under face.
  • Eyes yellow.

Immature Description

Similar to adult.

Range Map Help

Great Gray Owl Range Map
View dynamic map of eBird sightings

Field MarksHelp

Similar Species

Similar Species

  • Barred Owl much smaller, has dark eyes, lacks black-and-white throat markings.

    Backyard Tips

    Consider putting up a nest box to attract a breeding pair. Make sure you put it up well before breeding season. Attach a guard to keep predators from raiding eggs and young. Find out more about nest boxes on our Attract Birds pages. You'll find plans for building a nest box of the appropriate size on our All About Birdhouses site.