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Virtual Owl Expert Speaker Series: 31 Years of Snowy Owl Research with Denver Holt

Mark your calendars: Denver will be presenting for the International Owl Center's Virtual Owl Expert Speaker Series!

Title: Snowy Owls: Thirty-one years of breeding season research in Barrow, Alaska with Denver Holt

When: Sunday January 8, 1 PM Central

Where: Online

Free, but registration is required.

For more information and to register:

PLEASE NOTE: This presentation will only be availble live, and will not be saved for later viewing. Please contact the International Owl Center with any questions.


About the presentation: Denver Holt and colleagues have been studying the natural history of breeding Snowy Owls and their primary prey, the Brown Lemming, for thirty-one years. The breeding season is long, approximately 4 months, and even during "summer" the weather is a challenge for researchers and the owls.

During this talk Denver will highlight some aspects of the owls' natural history such as the mating system, division of labor between male and female to raise a family, nest defense behavior, nestling growth and development, food habits, lemming population fluctuations, and more.

Denver will also discuss how Snowy Owls could make decisions to stay and breed or migrate through Barrow during early spring. He will also answer the following questions:

  • Why are Snowy Owls white?

  • Why have they evolved sexual color dimorphism?

  • What drives their migration?

  • What is an irruption?

  • Are their populations declining, stable, or, we do not know?

Finally, Denver will emphasize the need for long-term research and monitoring on their breeding and non-breeding grounds.

Denver Holt is the founder and president of the Owl Research Institute, a nonprofit he started 30 years ago. Today, it is one of the premier owl research centers in the world, just as Holt is one of the leading experts.

​​Holt is a widely published author who has been featured in many articles from National Geographic to the New York Times, as well as in many television programs. He has educated and entertained people from all walks of life and enjoys guiding, meeting new people, and expanding his knowledge of wildlife and the natural world.


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