Range: Much of Western & Central North America, Florida, through Central America and drier areas of South America.
Habitat: Open country, such as grasslands, deserts, dunes. They are often found in airports and golf courses, and other open man-made areas.
Diet: Insects, small rodents, lizards, small birds. They may chase prey on foot or dive on it from a perch. Occasionally they eat fruit.
Lifespan: 8 to 10 years in the wild, over 10 years in captivity.
Swivel came to us on November 25, 2013 from the Lindsay Wildlife Center. He had flown into a barbed wire fence and tore a ligament in his wing, preventing him from having full flight.
• They are one of the few raptors in which the male is bigger than the female.
• Young Burrowing Owls mimic the sound of a rattlesnake if they feel threatened.
• Burrowing Owls often line their burrows with mammal dung to attract insects, particularly their favorite, the dung beetle.
• This owl goes by many names, including Billy Owl, Prairie Owl, Ground Owl, and Howdy Owl.
• Burrowing owls do not hoot
• Burrowing Owls may lay anywhere from two to twelve eggs
• These birds are often found in prairie dog towns, sometimes sharing the same burrow with their mammalian neighbors. They do sometimes eat young prairie dogs
• Although they prefer using pre-dug burrows made by another animal, they are fully capable of digging their own, but rarely do so. They use burrows made by prairie dogs, skunks, tortoises, and even badgers.
• Depending on prey availability and seasonal changes, Burrowing Owls may be active during the day (diurnal), at dusk(crepuscular), or at night (nocturnal).