Northern Saw-whet Owl
• Peak Breeding Activity: March-July
• Incubation: 26-28 days
• Clutch Size: 4-7 eggs
• Young Fledge: 4-5 weeks after hatching
• Typical Foods: small mammals, large insects, and birds
• Ohio Status: Species of Special Interest
This small owl has brown upperparts with large white spots and paler underparts with dark streaks. The eyes are yellow and the bill is dark in color.
Habitat and Habits
Northern saw-whet owls inhabit all types of woodlands, but are usually most abundant in coniferous forests. They may also inhabit evergreen thickets in suburban and rural environments. Saw-whet owls are entirely nocturnal; they spend the day roosting in dense foliage.
Reproduction and Care of the Young
After a pair has formed, the female will select a nest site, usually a deserted woodpecker hole or natural cavity. The male provides food and protection to the female and chicks, and the female does all the incubating, feeding, and brooding.