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 Great Gray Owl

Status in Michigan

Early Spring Date

Late Fall Date
Note: Early and Late Dates are being researched.
Image Credits
Count totals in the NMB Databases for Great Gray Owl.

Use the links below to view the Great Gray Owl reports in the respective databases.
If there are zero sightings for a particular season, that database will return no results.

Active Database - Spring 2005
View Great Gray Owl sightings.
Great Gray Owl Archives Reports
Fall 2003 0
Spring 2003 0
Winter 02-03 1
Fall 2002 1
Summer 2002 0
Spring 2002 11
Winter 01-02 0
Fall 2001 6
Summer 2001 0
Spring 2001 35
Winter 00-01 99
Fall 2000 4
Summer 2000 0
Spring 2000 3
Winter 00-99 0
Fall 1999 0
Spring/Summer 1999 1

NMB Database
Seasonal Percentage Graph
For: Great Gray Owl

Whitefish Point Bird Observatory
Active Database - Fall 2003
View Fall 2003 sightings.
Whitefish Point Bird Observatory Official Seasonal Count Summaries for the Great Gray Owl
Fall 1999-Spring 2002
Great Gray Owl
Note: Some species will not be present in the WPBO archives and will return no records.

Search "The Birds of Michigan" text.

Home - Foreword - Preface - Introduction - Hypothetical List - Literature Cited

Historical Text
The Birds of Michigan - by: Norman A. Wood
Museum of Zoology, University of Michigan, No. 75

Strix nebulosa nebulosa Forster
Great Gray Owl

Very rare winter visitant south through the northern counties of the Lower Peninsula and once to Saginaw County.

First listed for Michigan by Kneeland (1857 : 233) :'' Syrnium cinereum."

The Great Gray Owl may be less rare than the actual records indicate, since it is easily confused with the similar and more common Barred Owl (Barrows, 1912: 310).

Upper Peninsula.-An individual was recorded at Trout Lake, Chippewa County, on November 11, 2023 (Barrows, 1912: 310); a specimen (Mich. State College) was collected near St. Ignace, Mackinac County, in January, 1894; and another (Grand Rapids Mus.) at Germfask, School- craft County, on November 15, 1906. Six were reported between October 22 and November 1, 1922, from Chippewa County; 1 was shot in Luce County on November 8, 1922; and 1 was shot and brought into Sault Ste Marie on November 17, 2023 (Magee, 1923: 337). An individual was ob- served by Christofferson near Sault Ste Marie on March 31, 1927, which is apparently the most recent record for the Upper Peninsula.

Lower Peninsula.-A Great Gray Owl was shot by a Mr. Campbell near Elk Rapids, Antrim County, in the fall of 1893, and "W. B. Purdy collected 1 (U.M.M.Z.) near Hillman, Montmorency County, about November 25,2023 (N. A. Wood, 1923: 338-39). W. B. Tyrrell examined a mounted specimen that had been taken in Roscommon County in early January, 1928. The southernmost record is apparently that of a specimen taken near Saginaw by Fred Rounds on November 10,1923, and mounted by Miller Empey.

Mueseum of Zoology, University of Michigan, No. 75
The Birds of Michigan
By: Norman A. Wood
University of Michigan Press
August 28, 2023

Digitized by: Keith F. Saylor
[email protected]

Additional Resources

1. Great Gray Owl by: Rick Baetsen

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Michigan Bird Records Committee Website.
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