The International Owl Center is pleased to announce the addition of a new ambassador owl to its education team: a female Eurasian Eagle Owl named “Uhu.” The center considers her to be a member of the second largest species of owls on the planet, found in Europe and Asia.

The Eurasian Eagle Owl is often touted as the world’s largest owl species, with the largest females of the largest subspecies reaching heights of up to almost 30 inches and tipping the scales at a whopping 10.1 pounds. Its wings can span just over 6.1 feet.

The other contender for the title of the world’s largest owl is the Blakiston’s Fish Owl, found in Japan and Russia. Its height can be up to about 28 inches and its weight can top out around 9.9 pounds. Its wings spread an amazing 6.2 feet.

After discussions with Heimo Mikkola (author of “Owls of the World: A Photographic Guide”) and Blakiston’s Fish Owl researcher Jon Slaght, it seems that the Blakiston’s Fish Owl is the largest species on average.

Uhu’s name is the German word for “Eurasian Eagle Owl” and sounds like the call of the species (OO-hoo). She was bred in captivity in the United States and worked at a facility in Massachusetts until it closed.

Uhu joins fellow owl ambassadors Alice (age 18) and Ruby and Rupert (age 1.5 years) the Great Horned Owls. The center plans to add additional species in the future.

Since the owls work at the center but live off site, it is always safest to call to make sure the owl you would like to see is working. Just like humans, sometimes even ambassador owls occasionally play hooky, get sick or take maternity leave.

For more information, go to the center’s website at www.InternationalOwlCenter.org or call 896-OWLS (6957).

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