Birds Of Southern California

Western-screech Owl (Megascops kennicottii)

The Western screech owl (Megascops kennicottii) is a small owl native to North and Central America, closely related to the European scops owl and the North American eastern screech owl. The scientific name commemorates the American naturalist Robert Kennicott. Length averages 22 cm (8.7 in), wingspan 55 cm (22 in) and weight 143 g (5.0 oz). Weight ranges from 88 to 220 g (3.1 to 7.8 oz). Females are larger than males and Northern populations are notably larger than Southern races.[3] Adults are larger than whiskered screech owls, with larger feet and more streaked plumage pattern. There are several morphs: brown Pacific, grey Pacific, Great Plains, Mojave, and Mexican. All have either brown or dark gray plumage with streaking on the underparts. There is no red morph. They have a round head with ear tufts, yellow eyes and a yellowish bill. Their appearance is quite similar to whiskered and eastern screech owls, so it's best to identify them by their calls. They were previously considered to be the same species as the eastern screech owl. The western screech owl is native to Canada, United States, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua. Its habitat includes temperate forests, subtropical and tropical montane forests, shrubland, desert, rural fields and even suburban parks and gardens. More at wikipedia: