photographs by Douglas Herr
Strigidae: Long-eared Owl (Asio otus)

The Long-eared Owl (Asio otus) is similar in apperance to the larger Great Horned Owl except the Long-eared Owl has 'plus' marks on its chest and belly where the Great Horned Owl has horizontal bars. Widespread in the northern hemisphere, in North America this owl breeds from western Canada to the Maritime Provinces, southward to Baja California, southern Arizona and New Mexico, and the Great Lakes region. In winter the owl migrates out of the northern-most part of its range. Feeding primarily on rodents, this owl has been shown under controlled conditions to be able to catch mice in complete darkness.

Its preferred habitat is dense vegetation adjacent to open grassland or shrubland, and open forests. Nests are often stick nests built by other species such as magpies, crows or hawks; rarely it will use cavities.

18 March 2007
Fresno County California

all photographs Copyright (C) Douglas Herr
last updated 09 June 2014