Eastern Screech-Owl

Adults range from 16 to 25 cm in length. They have either rusty or dark gray intricately patterned plumage with streaking on the underparts. Small and stocky, short-tailed and broad-winged, they have a large round head with ear tufts, yellow eyes and a yellowish bill. Rusty birds are more common in the southern parts of the range; pairings of the two color variants do occur. A pale gray variation also exists in western Canada and the north-central United States. The color variations are referred to as red-phase and gray-phase by bird watchers and ornithologists.

Picture of the Eastern Screech-Owl has been licensed under a GFDL
Original source: Own work, http://www.pbase.com/image/58326162
Author: Wolfgang WanderPermission(Reusing this file)Licenced under GFDL 1.2
Permission: GNU Free Documentation License

The Eastern Screech-Owl is classified as Least Concern. Does not qualify for a more at risk category. Widespread and abundant taxa are included in this category.

The Eastern Screech Owl or Eastern Screech-Owl (Megascops asio) is a small owl. More

Eastern Screech-Owls can be confused with Western Screech-Owls. One way to tell the difference is the bill colour - Eastern Screech Owls have gray-green bills while Western Screech Owls have gray to black bills. They can also be distinguished by their different calls, and only occur together locally in eastern Colorado and southern Texas. The Eastern Screech-Owl flies fairly rapidly with a steady wingbeat (about 5 strokes/second). More

The Eastern Screech-Owl is found in nearly every habitat throughout the eastern United States and southern Canada. It is common in urban as well as rural areas and readily nests in nest boxes. More

The Eastern Screech-owl Megascops asio is one of the smallest species of owls in North America. All of the birds in this genus are small and agile. Screech-owls are generally colored in various brownish hues with usually a whitish, patterned underside, which helps to camouflage them against the bark of trees. Some are polymorphic, occurring in a grayish- and a reddish-brown morph. Ecology and behavior - Screech-owls hunt from perches in semi-open landscapes. More

The Eastern Screech-Owl is a very common resident in much of its range. In North America it is found in both red and gray color morphs. Here you will find photos, recordings and a brief field notes section to help identify and enjoy this beautiful owl. To jump immediately to any of these sections use the Page Jump Links below. More

The Eastern Screech-owl is a small bird measuring just 8 inches in height. It is dichromatic, which means they come in 2 distinct color patterns. Their plumage is either uniformly gray or uniformly rufous. Both color morphs include darker streaks on the head, back, wings, and breast. The Eastern Screech-Owl is well camouflaged against the bark of a tree. It is a stocky bird with a short tail, broad wings, and a larage round head. More

* Comments: The eastern screech-owl is one of our smallest owls. It occurs in two colors. The majority are gray but about 7 percent of the birds are red. Both males and females may be either color. The call of a screech-owl is not a screech but a soft, mournful, descending whinny. They are very secretive and commonly live in urban yards without the owner More

that the Eastern Screech-Owl (Otus asio) “is so common in towns that it is almost a dooryard bird.” Speculation is that this little owl receives some protection in smaller and more urban timber because the Great Horned Owl is not common there: the larger owl sometimes feeds on the smaller owl where the two inhabit the same timber. There are two color phases of Eastern Screech-Owls, red (actually a reddish brown) and gray. Mated pairs are often of mixed color phases. More

(Appearance The Eastern Screech-Owl is a small, nocturnal, woodland Owl. There are three color morphs, a gray phase , a reddish-brown phase. Adult (gray phase) - facial disks dusky white with fine gray-brown mottling, bordered by black. The iris is bright yellow and the bill is gray-green, with tufts of bristly feathers around its base. More

Picture of Megascops asio above has been licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike license.
Original source: Jeff Whitlock
Author: Jeff Whitlock
Permission: Some rights reserved
Order : Strigiformes
Family : Strigidae
Genus : Megascops
Species : asio
Authority : (Linnaeus, 1758)