Feb 28, 2005 — The Great Gray Owl usually lives deep in the boreal forests of Canada. It's the official bird of the province of Manitoba. But due to scarce food and severe weather, thousands of the raptors have drifted south this year. They've invaded Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan, even southern Ontario and Quebec. But a Great Gray hadn't been spotted in New York State since 1996, according to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Until last Wednesday, that is, when ornithologist Gerry Smith spotted one in the farm fields between Clayton and Cape Vincent in Jefferson County. It so happened that David Sommerstein was there too and has the story.