Common Name: Snowy Owl
Latin Name: Bubo scandiacus
From: Urbana, Illinois
Qigiq (pronounced KWIG-ick) was found starving and injured along the roadside in Illinois on January 3, 2012. It was presumed that he had been surviving on road kill and was struck by a car, resulting in severe multiple fractures to his left humerus. He was sent to the University of Illinois Wildlife Medical Clinic where he underwent several surgeries in an attempt to repair his wing. Due to the lack of space for flight, Qigiq was sent to the Alaska Raptor Center in hopes that the Aerobic Flight Aviary would allow the proper exercise of flight muscles and help regain his ability to fly. Unfortunately, after a few months of observations and the best efforts of our rehabilitative staff, Qigiq was deemed non-flighted and unable to be released.
Snowy owls are a large diurnal owl found in northern circumpolar regions of North America and Eurasia. Their light plumage, densely insulating down and excessively feathered feet are their primary adaptations for life in the Arctic. A disk of stiff feathers surrounding large yellow eyes reflect sound waves to ear openings, allowing acute hearing and detection of prey under the snow. Being opportunistic hunters allows for a wide variety of prey resources such as lemmings, arctic hares, grouse and even ducks. Snowy owls spend much of their time on the ground and build nest scrapes atop mounds and boulders where visibility of the surrounding environment is crucial for spotting predators in the open spaces of the tundra.
The Alaska Raptor Center’s Adopt-A-Raptor program allows people around the world to help us care for Alaska’s wild birds. By becoming an adoptive “parent,” you help support the daily care, feeding and any required medical treatment for your adopted bird.
Adoptive “parents” receive an official adoption certificate, a photograph and biography of the adopted bird, natural history information, and a one-year membership to the Alaska Raptor Center. As a member you will receive a 10% discount on all of our gift shop items in future purchases.
Teachers also can bring Alaska’s wildlife into their classrooms with the Alaska Raptor Center’s “Adopt-A-Raptor” program. Classes help provide for the daily care, feeding and medical treatment of their adopted bird. In return, teachers receive curriculum materials to help plan lessons on raptors and their habitats; an adoption certificate and photo of the adopted bird to display in the classroom; natural history and information on the bird; and a one-year membership to the Alaska Raptor Center. Most important, the students learn about stewardship and caring for wild animals, building a foundation and appreciation for nature conservation they can develop as they grow.
Thank you for your support and congratulations!