A Reference for North and Central American Owls
The Boreal Owl is a much sought after nocturnal owl that lives in the northern boreal forests around the world. Here you will find photos, range map and a brief field notes section to help identify and enjoy this beautiful owl.
A more in depth write up can be found in its natural history page.
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Boreal Owl – Aegolius funereus
The Boreal Owl along with the Northern Saw-whet Owl are the North American representatives of the genus Aegolius. The two owls are similar in appearance although the Boreal Owl is larger and generally deep brown in contrast with the Saw-whet’s reddish brown back and chestnut chest streaking. The Boreal’s crown is thickly white spotted with larger white markings or spots on the back also. The bill is yellowish to horn in color.
The sexes are alike although they have distinct primary calls. The juvenal is deep sooty brown with some white spotting along the lower back, black facial disk with a white “V” on forehead (“eyebrows”).
Adult length is 10″ (about the size of an American Robin or slightly smaller than an American Kestrel). A nocturnal owl that is resident in the continental U.S. Rockies north into and across Canada and eastern Alaska. Moves (migrates) southward into the northern states in the winter months.