Daily Archives: February 5, 2014


SNOWday Science: Are Snowy Owls Diurnal or Nocturnal? 9

Use the SNOWstorm Tracker to explore the travels of Snowy Owl “Assateague” for 24 hours along Reed’s Beach, Cape May, New Jersey and draw your own conclusion about whether “Assateague” is diurnal or nocturnal. Red arrows indicate daytime or diurnal movements. Blue arrows indicate nighttime or nocturnal movements. Backgrounder First some definitions. Nocturnal animals are active at night. Diurnal animals are active during the day. The existing literature is pretty definitive that Snowy Owls are not strictly nocturnal or diurnal. A few examples follow: PBS’s Nature: Snowy Owl Infographic (2012) “Unlike most owls, which are nocturnal, snowy owls are diurnal—they hunt and are active both day and night.” National Geographic: Snowy Owl (2014) “Unlike most owls, which are nocturnal, snowy owls are diurnal—they […]