BURROWING OWL

Scientific Name: Athene cunicularia
Order
Strigiformes (owls)

Family
Strigidae (typical owls)

Habitat & Range
Burrowing owls range throughout the open landscapes of North and South America. They will inhabit any open dry area with little to no vegetation.

Identification
Burrowing owls are small ground-dwellers with short tails and long legs. The body structure is adapted for a terrestrial lifestyle, which is very uncommon for owls. They are one of the smallest owl species, with both males and females weighing between 5 and 8 oz. The head and wings are brown with white spotting, while the chest is white with brown spots.

Diet
Burrowing owls will take to the air to hunt, or they will sometimes chase their prey on the ground. They eat mostly insects, small rodents and lizards.

Reproduction & Lifespan
Burrowing owls will make their nest in abandoned prairie dog burrows, or excavate their own. Eggs are laid between March and July. On average there are 7 to 9 eggs per clutch.

The lifespan of the burrowing owl has been known to last 15 years.

Fantastic Fact
Quite the Head-Turner
Like many birds of prey, the eyes of the burrowing owl are extremely large but lack any muscle to control movement. As a result, the owl turns its head (up to 270 degrees) in order to look around.
 
 
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