CINCINNATI -- Amid school closings and frantic road saltings, there might be one piece of good news about the chill coming to Cincinnati: It makes us a hotter (colder) destination for snowy owls like the one spotted Thursday in Great American Ball Park.
GABP head groundskeeper Stephen Lord snapped a picture when he saw one of the fabulous fowl perched inside the stadium Thursday.
A few days late for #NationalBirdDay but we spotted a Snowy Owl here today. #reds #BirdWatching Maybe he will replace Sam The Bald Eagle? pic.twitter.com/o35iEbSKyk
— Stephen Lord (@TurfSpartanLord) January 9, 2018
Popular culture's most recognizable snowy owl is probably Hedwig, the familiar who delivers mail for the boy wizard Harry Potter, but real, non-magical members of her species seldom stray as far south as England. Seeing one in Ohio -- hundreds of miles from their natural habitat in the Arctic Circle -- is an even bigger surprise.
It's not unprecedented, however. The winters of 2011-'12 and 2013-'14 each saw massive southern migrations of these blanched birds.
We don't know if this avian arrival is part of a larger migratory pattern or just an independent tourist, but either way, we wish him a happy Friday.
He's likely to be among the only ones loving the weather.