Wide variety of habitats, including deciduous, mixed, or conifer forests. Prefers open and secondary growth woodlands, swamps, agricultural areas, and orchards (Houston et al. 1998). Uses existing tree nests of a variety of species or may nest in cavities of trees, snags, cliffs, buildings, artificial nests, or on ground (Houston et al. 1998). In the Yukon, typically nests in mature spruce forest, but uses whatever habitat snowshoe hares (main prey) are plentiful in (Alexander et al. 2003).
Alexander, S. A., F. I. Doyle, C. D. Ecker, H. Grünberg, N. L. Hughes, M. Jensen, I. Johnson, D. H. Mossop, W. A. Nixon, and P. H. Sinclair. 2003. Birds of the Yukon Territory (P. H. Sinclair, W. A. Nixon, C. D. Eckert, and N. L. Hughes, eds.). UBC Press, Vancouver, B.C.
Houston, C. S., D. G. Smith, and C. Rohner. 1998. Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus). In The Birds of North America, Vol. 7, No. 372 (A. Poole and F. Gill, Eds.). Philadelphia: The Academy of Natural Sciences; Washington, D.C.: The American Ornithologists’ Union.