Burrowing Owl Athene cunicularia



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Small, long-legged owl that is active during the day. Adults are mottled brown and white with yellow eyes and a yellow bill. Birds in Florida and the Caribbean tend to have whiter spots than western Burrowing Owls.


Long-legged owl with a flat headed look. Mottled brown and white with yellow eyes and a yellow bill.


Hunts on or near the ground during the day.


Nests in underground burrows. Juveniles stick together near the nest burrow for several weeks after hatching. Note unmarked pale belly.


Nests in underground burrows in open, treeless areas with low, sparse vegetation.


Found in grasslands, deserts, sagebrush flats, golf courses, pastures, agricultural fields, airport medians, road embankments, cemeteries, and urban vacant lots. Often perches on fence posts or other elevated structures.

Recommended Citation

Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: https://neotropical.birds.cornell.edu/Species-Account/nb/species/burowl