Snowy owls nest in the Arctic tundra of the northernmost stretches of Alaska, Northern Canada, and Eurasia. They winter south through Canada and northern Eurasia, with irruptions occurring further south in some years. Snowy owls are attracted to open areas like coastal dunes and prairies that appear somewhat similar to tundra. During irruption years when they are found in the Northeastern US, juveniles frequent developed areas, as well as the expected grassland/agricultural areas that older birds primarily utilize. All ages spend a fair amount of their time over water in the Great Lakes and Atlantic Ocean, mostly on ice floes. Large winter irruptions at temperate latitudes are thought to be due to good breeding conditions resulting in more juvenile migrants. They have been reported as far south as the American Gulf Coast states, Hawaii, southernmost Russia, and northern China.