Saturday, December 10, 2016

Long-eared Owl

This cute little one is a long-eared owl, a species which breeds in Europe, Asia, and North America. 
The card was sent from Switzerland by Óscar.

Long-eared Owls are medium-sized, slender owls with long ear tufts. The head, roughly as wide as it is long, looks squarish. The facial disks are long and narrow.

Photo: Bernard Bellon
Long-eared Owls are fairly dark birds with buff or orange faces and intricate black, brown, and buff patterning on its feathers. The ear tufts are black with buff or orange fringes, the face has two vertical white lines between the eyes, and the eyes are yellow.
They are are nocturnal and generally spend days roosting in dense parts of trees, often near the trunk where their plumage provides excellent camouflage. The species is quite vocal, and makes an incredible variety of hoots, squeals, barks, and other noises. They hunt by making low, coursing passes over open ground, but they rarely hunt before true dark. In winter, the species often roosts communally.
These owls require a combination of grassland or other open country for foraging, and dense tall shrubs or trees for nesting and roosting. Pine stands and windbreaks or shelterbelts are favored winter roost habitat. - in:

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