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Rare snowy owl spotted at Great American Ball Park

Posted at 11:35 PM, Jan 11, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-12 00:00:51-05

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.

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.