The last time a snowy owl was sighted was in 1890. It was such a surprising moment when a snowy owl stopped at the North Meadow baseball and softball diamonds on January 27. Immediately the owl was sighted, a large crowd gathered at the scene.
In 1890, a large number of charismatic white raptors flew to Delaware. In that year, there wasn’t any camera-weilding birdwatchers to capture this event as a photographic proof. However, the story is different in this year.
“It’s a mega-rarity. This is a very important sighting. It’s extremely rare in Manhattan.” New York City Audubon’s director of development Kellye Rosenheim to the Gothamist’s Jake Offenhartz.
According to the National Audubon Society, snowy owls travel south every winter, and their normal winter range barely crosses the U.S.-Canada border. When these owls travel south, they tend to look for habitats that look similar to their tundra home.
This brings them to cold shores and open fields. Snowy owls have been spotted at Jones Beach, Randalls and Liberty Islands, and a courtyard at Rikers Island city jail, all of these places are around New York.
According to onlookers, the snowy owl is a young female because it has thick black stripes. The birder who runs Manhattan Bird Alerts suspects that the owl landed in the park because it mistook the sandy baseball diamonds for a beach.