Northern Saw-whet Owl
Northern Saw-whet Owl: Small, large headed owl, brown upperparts, white underparts with thick brown stripes. Head has gray facial disk with white "Y” between eyes; lacks ear tufts. Bill is dark. Wings are brown with white spots. White undertail coverts. Direct, silent flight with fluttering wing beats.
Range and Habitat
Northern Saw-whet Owl: Found from southern Alaska and Canada to northern Mexico; migrate to southern parts of range during winter, especially when food is scarce. Preferred habitats include dense coniferous or mixed hardwood forests.
The Northern Saw-whet Owl has a large range, estimated globally at 5,700,000 square kilometers. Native to North America, El Salvador, and Guatemala, this bird prefers subtropical or tropical forest and temperate desert ecosystems, though it can reside in urban areas. The global population of this bird is estimated at 200,000 to 600,000 individuals and does not show signs of decline that would necessitate inclusion on the IUCN Red List. For this reason, the current evaluation status of the Northern Saw-whet Owl is Least Concern.
The Northern Saw-whet Owl is also called Acadian Owl, Blind Owl, Kirkland's Owl, the Saw-filer, Sparrow Owl, White-fronted Owl, Farmland Owl, Little Nightbird, Queen Charlotte Owl, and the Whet-saw Owl.
When prey is plentiful, they will kill up to 6 mice in rapid succession, without consuming any of them. The excess food is cached in a safe place and, in winter, is thawed out later by "brooding" the frozen carcass. When food is plentiful, it is common for only the head of each prey to be eaten.
When threatened, they elongate their body in order to appear like a tree branch, often bringing one wing around to the front of their body.
A group of owls has many collective nouns, including a "bazaar", "glaring", "parliament", "stooping", and "wisdom" of owls.