Surprising number of snowy owls are making Cleveland their home

What's white, flies in the winter and lands on Lake Erie's shores?

If you said snow, you'd only be half right.

The answer is snowy owls, and there are several making downtown Cleveland their home.

Photojournalist Carl Bachtel hit the lakefront on the lookout for these majestic birds.

Some may say this weather is for the birds. And they'd be right. It's perfect for snowy owls.

Nature photographer Chuck Slusarczyk Jr. says the increased numbers are likely from a good hatch way up north on the tundra where they nest. Cleveland has been a popular stopover for these beautiful owls.

"Eight birds on one day between here at Edgewater Park and Burke Lakefront Airport," he said. "There were four birds between here and the airport and four at the airport itself."

Margaret Bowman from Newark came to see the snowys.

"It's just extraordinary," she said. "I have never in 15 years seen more than one at a time."

The owls are making Cleveland a birding destination

If you don't see an owl right away, keep your eyes peeled for the brown pelican.


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