Saturday, 13 December 2008

Special birds: Scops Owl

Scops Owls Otus scops vary in colour from brown to grey. This photo of a grey-phased bird was taken by Milan Ruzic in Serbia. These tiny owls (maximum 20cm long) are very common in the southern Balkans, becoming scarcer in the north of their range. They inhabit open woodland, olive groves, orchards, parks, camp-sites and gardens, often in villages and towns. They usually nest in holes in trees and in crevices in cliffs and buildings. Scops Owls are mostly migratory, leaving in September and returning to breeding areas as early as February.

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