Long-eared Owl

photo by Martha de Jong-Lantink CC BY-NC-ND

Long-eared Owl are slender owls (13-16 in) with long ear tufts pointing straight up. Their dark mottled feathers and rusty-orange facial disc provide excellent camouflage when roosting during the day in thick stands of trees.

They hunt in open grasslands at night, occasionally at dusk, flying low over the ground and searching for prey by sight or sound. They eat small mammals, particularly rodents.

Long-eared Owl don't build their own nests. Instead, they use stick nests built by Crow and Magpie.

Could it be? Great Horned Owl are larger than the Long-eared Owl. Their ear tufts are shorter and point out at an angle rather than straight up and down.

Did you know? If disturbed on their nest, Long-eared Owl raise their ear tufts and compress their feathers to disguise themselves as a broken branch.

See Also: Burrowing Owl, Great Gray Owl, Great Horned Owl, Northern Hawk Owl, Northern Saw-whet Owl, Snowy Owl