The Mottled Owl is a common forest owl throughout much of Central and South America. It is a midsized owl that lacks ear tufts and is brown above and whitish below with dark streaking, dark eyes, a yellow bill. The owls in the closely related genus Strix are all larger than Mottled Owl. The can be found in many different forest types from dry thornscrub to wet tropical evergreen forest, and reside from sea level upslope to over 2,000 meters. Mottled Owls can be found at night by their distinctive deep, popping hoot calls given in series.