The 13 Most Powerful Owls In The World

Most people have heard the deep, powerful hooting of an owl late at night

These impressive birds are generally nocturnal, and their camouflaged feathers commonly allow them to go unseen by prey animals and bird-watchers alike

Those who are lucky enough to spot one of the elusive owls are often surprised by just how large they can get!

While a large portion of the hefty appearance of these 5 species of owls can be attributed to their fluffy feathers, make no mistake–these incredible raptors can grow to amazing sizes

Let’s learn a little bit about 5 of the largest species of owls in the world, and what makes each of them special

Great Horned Owl – (Bubo virginianus)

Location: North and South America and the Arctic

The Great Horned Owl is the most common owl in the Americas, and gets its name from its iconic feathered “horns” that extend from the top of its head

These impressive birds are primarily monogamous, and share parental duties such as incubating eggs and hunting for food to sustain both parents during the incubation period

This versatile hunter’s prey ranges from small critters like scorpions and rodents to larger birds, including other raptors

The Great Horned Owl is even powerful enough to bring down prey much larger than itself, though most of the time this isn’t necessary

Like many other owls, the Great Horned Owl swallows its prey whole

Snowy Owl – (Bubo scandiacus)

Location: North America and Arctic tundras

Identifying Trait: Distinctive black and white plumage and heavily feathered feet

This owl’s beautiful coat of feathers is adapted for warmth and camouflage, helping it blend into its frigid habitat to avoid startling its prey before it finds the perfect moment to strike

The Snowy Owl has a distinct tuft of feathers surrounding its beak, which helps it feel nearby objects more effectively

Additional thick tufts of feathers cover the bird’s feet, serving both to keep it warm and to act as snowshoes, which help it to avoid sinking into the snow

The Snowy Owl is thought to be one of the most agile owls, and is able to pluck small birds from their flight path mid-air

Lemmings make up a major portion of the Snowy Owl’s diet, and are such an key source of food that the lemming population may determine whether or not the owls nest and reproduce that year

In contrast to many other owl species, the Snowy Owl is more on the diurnal side

It rests at night, and often hunts its prey during the daytime

Great Grey Owl – (Strix nebulosa)

Location: North America

Identifying Trait: Large facial disc, mottled grey coat, and white “moustache”

Source: pixabaycom

This adept hunter sports a beautiful coat of grey feathers and the largest facial disc of any known bird

This facial disc is a round, concave formation of feathers that directs sound more effectively to the owl’s ears

The Great Grey Owl’s superb hearing enables it to locate prey up to two feet deep in the snow

This owl’s prey consists largely of rodents and small birds, though it has been known to eat larger prey such as smaller raptors and larger mammals such as rabbits

While largely nocturnal, Great Grey Owls also hunt throughout the daytime

Swamplands and moist forests appeal more to this bird than other habitats do, but they are willing to inhabit other environments, especially during migration

Great Grey Owls do not build their own nests

Eurasian Eagle Owl – (Bubo bubo)

Location: Europe, Asia, and Northern Africa

Identifying Trait: Distinct vocal patterns, striking orange eyes, and feathery tufts

Source: goodfreephotoscom

These large, adaptable birds can be found in a wide variety of habitats

They’re even known to make their home in urban areas like city parks as long as there are adequate nesting spots and prey to hunt

With no natural predators in the wild and only human interference to fear, Eurasian Eagle Owls can live to the ripe old age of 20 years in its natural habitat

Like most owls, this feathered hunter is nocturnal and plays an important part in keeping the populations of prey animals in check

The Eurasian Eagle Owl enjoys a flexible diet of mammals, birds, fish, insects, and reptiles

This large predator has even been known to take down young deer for its dinner

Each individual member of the Eurasian Eagle Owl population has its own unique set of vocalizations, and you can determine which owl is calling by the distinct sound of its voice

Blakiston’s Fish Owl – (Bubo blakistoni)

Wingspan: 65 feet

Wingspan: 65 feet

Wingspan: 65 feet

Wingspan: 65 feet

Wingspan: 65 feet

Location: Russia, China, and Hokkaido, Japan

Identifying Trait: Ear-like tufts and a diet of fish

Source: flickrcom

The Blakiston’s Fish Owl is the largest owl in the world

This majestic sub-variety of eagle owl is found only in a few specific areas of the world, and conservation efforts must be made in order to preserve its habitat

Deforestation and excessive fishing of the owl’s preferred food have already impacted the population enough to place it on the endangered species list

The Blakiston’s Fish Owl requires riparian forests with old, dead trees in order to nest, hunt, and thrive

On top of being the largest owl in the world, this beautiful owl is also one of the rarest of all birds

Most owls have soft, downy feathers on their wings in order to silently sneak up on prey

Since the Blakiston’s Fish Owl hunts primarily fish, they do not have the usual downy layer to muffle the beating of their wings

Some are large, powerful owl species, and some are tiny, fragile creatures

So what are the 13 largest owls in the world that are powerful?

Blakiston’s fish owl, Eurasian eagle owl, great grey owl, snowy owl, etc

are the world’s most powerful owls in the world

All these 13 owls are not only powerful, but they are on the bigger side

The 3rd one on the list is the owl species with the most extended bodies

Keep reading to learn about the 13 largest owl species and where they reside worldwide

How Big Is An Owl?

An owl’s size can be similar to a hawk

As hawks are active during the day and owls are active at night, they are considered counterparts

Their length ranges from 5-33 inches (13-84 cm), and their wingspans are 1-66 feet (03-20 meters)

Most of the owl species are on the smaller side, and only a handful are on the larger side

13 Largest and Biggest Owl In the World

There are around 250 species of owls all around the world

There are around 250 species of owls all around the world

Among them, most species are not big owls, and only a handful have a formidable size

Below, 13 of the largest and biggest owls have been mentioned alongside their habitat

1 Blakiston’s Fish Owl

The world’s largest owl also the biggest species was named after a British naturalist

His name was Thomas Blakiston, and he documented the bird in 1883 for the first time

Even though its wingspan is the biggest, there are another large owl species that is a tall owl species in comparison

Its length from the beak to its tail can be as long as 72 cm, and its wingspan can be up to 200 cm, the largest owl wingspan

It also weighs more than all other owl species, weighing as much as 101 pounds

They can also be seen at the Kuril and Sakhalin islands of Russia and Vladivostok, A Russian city

The Manchurian region of China is also a habitat for Blakiston fish owls

Recently the bird has been said to be facing extinction due to the demolition of their natural habitat due to urbanization

Only 150 Blakiston’s Fish Owls are estimated to reside in Japan only

The biggest population of Blakiston’s Fish owl is currently seen in Russia

It is estimated that 1,500 birds are in Russia

Geneticists are worried about the hereditary diseases among the Blakiston’s Fish owl species

2 Eurasian Eagle Owl

The 2nd largest Owl in the world is the Eurasian Eagle Owl It can grow to have a body as long as 75 cm as a tall owl species

They are longer than Blakiston’s Fish Owl, but they are not the tallest Owl But they have smaller wingspan than the Blakiston’s Fish Owl, and they can be as long as 188 cm

Their habitat is around Asia

But they avoid the tropical region in the South and Southeast of Asia

So they avoid Northern Europe and Siberia as well

The Eurasian Eagle Owl has a wide habitat range so that it can populate and grow

Scientists estimate that one million Eurasian Eagle owls can be found worldwide

So it is not endangered of extinction like Blakiston’s Fish Owl 3

Great Grey Owl

You may have heard of the “Phantom of the North” It is the nickname of the Great Grey Owl Its gray plumage makes an excellent camouflage for hunting prey

The Great Grey Owl is the tallest Owl, and as the tallest Owl, it has 84 cm in length from its beak to its tail

It is a big owl, but the previous was a huge Owl as a species

The species Great Grey Owl used to reside in Northern Asia before it migrated to North America

They can also be seen in the northwestern states of the USA, albeit the population is small there

Although urbanization has impacted the species, its population is still thriving well

4 Snowy Owl

Snowy Owl is an iconic species of Owl If you are a fan of harry potter, you know Harry’s pet owl was a snowy owl

They are also a large owl species which compliments their beauty

In the case of Snowy Owls, the biggest threat to them is not human development but rather their tendency to crash into vehicles and airplanes

Their population had a huge drop and has an estimation of 100,000 birds alive, which makes them an endangered owl species

The white plumage helps this snowy owl to blend into the snowy Arctic environment effortlessly

That is why it has another name, the Arctic Owl But you shouldn’t think that the Snowy Owl only remains in the snowy areas

For hunting and nesting, they fly to the sub-arctic regions as well

5 Verreaux’s Eagle Owl

Verreaux’s Eagle Owl has many different names

Some call it the Giant Eagle Owl, and some call it the Milky Eagle Owl It is the largest owl species in Africa and the tropical region

Jules Verreaux, a french naturalist who first documented this species, is the inspiration whose name was used to name the owl species

Its length can be up to 66 cm long, and they have a wingspan of up to 164 cm

Its habitat is in the south of the Sahara, across the African continent

This kept the species from expanding north

Verreaux’s Eagle Owl species have also adapted to human development

Although their population is not known currently, they are not endangered

6 Great Horned Owl

Great Horned Owl is the biggest Owl in Texas and the most commonly found species in America

It’s named as such because of its horn, like a feather on its head

Their appearance is like a horn, but they are just feathers

The Great Horned Owl species can be as tall as 64 cm and can have a wingspan of 153 cm

They are one of the big owl species

Their habitat is across the North American continent

But they can also be seen in Central America and the northern regions of South America

A small population of this species can be seen in places like Brazil and the eastern part of Argentina

Their vast habitat has allowed them to keep a stable population and grow

7 Barred Owl

Barred owls, also known as Striped Owls, have striping patterns all over their body

They are the only owl species with brown eyes in the Eastern part of the USA

In contrast, all the other owl species have golden or yellow eyes in that region

Other than the eastern part of the USA, Southern Canada has a large population of Barred Owls

They are considered to be invasive species and the most successful owl species

Scientists even considered culling their species to keep the Barred Owls population in check

8 Powerful Owl

The Powerful Owl, also called the Powerful BooBook, is the biggest species of Owl in Australia

The Powerful Owl species are considered the most carnivorous owl species

This is the only species that can match up to them, as 75% of their diet is meat

Their natural habitat is on the Eastern coast of Australia and the Great Dividing Range mountains

The mountains are an obstacle to the species expanding to other continents

Although it’s unclear if they are endangered, Victoria and New South Wales states say it to be vulnerable, but international organizations say otherwise

9 Spotted Owl

When you first see a spotted owl, you may be mistaken to think it is a Barred Owl They have similar appearances, and although subtle, they have differences

The Spotted Owls have cross-shaped spots, whereas the Barred Owls have stripes

There is also competition between the Spotted and Barred Owls, which causes a negative impact on the Spotted Owls

Unlike the Barred Owls, international organizations consider them an endangered species

The Spotted Owls can be as long as 43 cm and can have a 114 cm wingspan

Their habitat is in Mexico, and some of the population is scattered around the Western and Southern USA

Due to the demolition of their natural habitat, the Spotted Owls suffered

Long-Eared Owl

Long-Eared Owl or Lesser Horned Owl is similar to the Great Horned Owl, as they also have horn-like feathers

Much of Asia and Europe are their natural habitat, and the USA also falls under their natural habitat

But they avoid the cold Siberian regions and Southern and Southeast Asia

See also:  Owl Vs Crow: Why Do Crows Not Like Owls And Attack Them?As they have a decreasing trend in their population, scientists are concerned for them, and human development is the primary cause of their endangerment

Northern Hawk Owl

The Northern Hawk Owl species resemble the spotted or barred owl species and have spots

Their length can be 447 cm, and they can have a wingspan of 45 cm

Their length can be 447 cm, and they can have a wingspan of 45 cm

They are not so much of a tall owl species in comparison

Thus, this owl weight is less compared to other species

Their natural habitat is in Northern Minnesota and other Northern and Central states of the USA

They also have a population in the Southern parts of Great Britain, Scandinavia, and Southern Russia

Their population does not have a decreasing trend, and thus, scientists have not declared them to be an endangered species

Barn Owl

Barn Owl species are a widely spread species, and they can be found in most places worldwide

They can be up to 39 cm long and have an 80-95 cm wingspan

They can be up to 39 cm long and have an 80-95 cm wingspan

They can be up to 39 cm long and have an 80-95 cm wingspan

Although they are on the smaller side among the large owl species, they are significant among the 250 species

Their habitats are in Vancouver and Ontario in Canada, Africa, the Canary Islands, etc

Among the Canary islands, Lanzarote and Tenerife have a better population of the Barn Owl species

In Canada and USA, there has been a decrease in their population

That makes them an endangered species

Burrowing Owl, also known as Shoco, is an owl with long legs, and they can be as long as 28 cm and have a wingspan of 86-102 cm

They are not substantial owl species compared to the others mentioned previously, but they are among the big ones

This owl species can be seen in various states of the South USA, Mexico, North America, and a few places in Central America

They can also be seen in a few places in Canada’s Caribbean Islands, and Subtropical and temperate regions are their most preferable habitat

In some areas of Southern Brazil, some of their population are distributed

Accordingly, as they have been seen less than their previous population, they are considered endangered owl species

What Is The Biggest Owl In The World?

The world’s largest Owl is the Blakiston’s Fish Owl species

They are a huge owl species with a wingspan growing up to 200cm

In comparison, only the Great Grey Owls are bigger as they are the longest owl species

Here are some common inquiries related to the owls you may have

Q: How small can an owl be?

Elf owls are considered the smallest owls

Q: Are great horned owls the strongest Owl?

Yes Based on predatory abilities, great horned owls are fierce and can hunt large prey, such as Peregrine Falcons, Ospreys, Prairie Falcon, and raptors

They also hunt smaller prey like scorpions, rodents, frogs, etc

Q: Can owls be larger compared to eagles?

No Owls can not be larger than an eagle

Although owls are considered “the tigers of the air,” bald eagles are much larger than owls

The wingspan of bald eagles is 83 inches on average, and they can weigh up to 10 pounds

On the other hand, great horned owls’ wingspan is half of that and stands at 48 inches

The 13 largest owls in the world that are powerful are full of variety and beauty

Some are taller than others and few of the species are wider than others

Snowy Owl, who has a snowy white body, is also an example of beauty

You have learned about the owl weight, length, habitat, and wingspan of every owl species

Now you know all about them and maybe even found the one you like and want to get as a pet

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