BOREAL OWL(Aegolius funereus) – (See images below)
DESCRIPTION: The Boreal Owl has a large head relative to the body size. There is a whitish facial disk surrounding yellow eyes. The plumage is brown with white specks for the upper parts, and the under parts are white with large brown stripes. The curved bill is yellow, and the legs and feet are covered with white feathers. The claws are dark brown. Females are similar to males but larger. It is a small owl, measuring around 25 cm (10 inches) long. There are seven subspecies.
NAME: This owl is called Tengmalm’s Owl in Europe (after Swedish naturalist Peter Gustav Tengmalm). The English name ‘Boreal’ stems from Greek ‘Boreas’, the name of the god of north winds and ‘Owl’ is an onomatopoeia for the bird’s call and comes from Cockney. As for the Latin genus name ‘Aegolius’, it is ancient Greek for ‘a kind of owl’, and the species name ‘funereus’ refers to ‘funeral’, because its call has been compared to the bell of a funeral (Ernest Choate).
HABITAT: Boreal coniferous forest and taiga.
DIET: Small rodents, birds, mammals, amphibians and insects.
NESTING: The boreal owls nest in woodpecker cavities or a natural one, but will also accept a human-made nest box. Around four or five white eggs are laid, incubated by the female, who also feeds the chicks.
DISTRIBUTION: There have been some reports of breeding individuals in the other Maritimes provinces, but its main generally year-round range is the boreal coniferous forest around the globe.
ON PEI: Although not breeding on Prince Edward Island, the boreal owl has been sighted occasionally on the island throughout the four seasons.
CONSERVATION: The current status of this owl is ‘least concern’, but little is known about it due to the remoteness of its habitat. It is sensitive to deforestation and readily accepts nesting boxes.
NOTES: The boreal owl hunts from a tree low perch. These owls guide themselves on their excellent hearing for locating theirprey.
SIMILAR SPECIES: Northern Saw-whet Owl, Eastern Screech Owl, Northern Hawk Owl
REFERENCES: (Maritimes Breeding Bird Atlas)
Minnesota Breeding Bird Atlas (Boreal Owl)

Boreal Owl - Amherst Island, ON - 2005 - Mdf
Boreal Owl – Amherst Island, ON – 2005 – Mdf
Boreal Owl juvenile - Innsbruck Zoo, Austria - June 30, 2010 - Maik Meid - Kauz
Boreal Owl juvenile – Innsbruck Zoo, Austria – June 30, 2010 – Maik Meid