Snowy Owl Bubo scandiacus nest mounds from Barrow, Alaska, were characterized measuring several variables from 114 nests and 2280 random mounds. Mound height appeared to be the most important trait, as nest mounds averaged about 1 m tall, and were significantly different from random mounds in all years. Generally circular nest bowls (n = 91) were dug by females and averaged 47.5 × 44.0 × 9.6 cm (length × width × depth). Mound vegetation did not conceal Incubating or brooding Snowy Owls. Tall nest mounds were advantageous in that they were drier (thinner snow cover which melted earlier allowing females to dig nest bowls), windier (relief from mosquitoes and cooler in summer) and allowed nesting owls greater vigilance against predators.
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