Athene cunicularia • Birds
A small owl with long legs and a short stubby tail, this owl’s wingspan is about twice his height. Males and females are the same size, have no ear tufts and are earth brown in color with white spots. When agitated, the burrowing owl will bob up and down and can make an alarm call that imitates the sound of a rattlesnake.
An avid insect eater, (mainly caught in flight), the burrowing owl will also eat small mammals (mostly rodents), scorpions, and lizards.
The open country of the foothills, valleys, and the coast of central and southern California is home for the burrowing owl. A ground dwelling owl, it is often seen standing in open land or on fence posts. The burrowing owl collects mammal dung and puts it in and around its burrow. The dung attracts dung beetles, which the owl
then captures and eats.
Females will lay 5-9 eggs and both parents will incubate the same nest year after year.