Body length: 60-75 cm
Wingspan: 160-180 cm
Body mass: male 1500-2500 g, female 1750-4000g
Appearance: massive owl with orange eyes and erect ”ears”.
Europe’s largest owl, though capable of remarkably secretive existence. Lives in forests and mountains, occupying abandoned nests of birds of prey, or laying eggs on ground, on rock ledges in mountains. Diet comprises rodents, hedgehogs and birds, but also even young foxes and roe deer. Most hunting at night, though also around dawn and dusk in breeding season. Visible ”ears” are simply elongated feathers of no use in hearing. This is a resident bird whose breeding sites receive zone protection.
Descriptions drawing on content of Ptaki Polski (“Birds of Poland”) - a book authored by Andrzej G. Kruszewicz, and published by MULTICO Oficyna Wydawnicza Sp. z o.o.