“The wild beasts of the desert shall also meet with the wild beasts of the island... the screech owl also shall rest there, and find for herself a place of rest” ~
~ The Bible ~
This adorable full grown adult Screech Owl's name is "Sanford" and was the darling at the Maitland Audubon Center :)
Please look at Sanford in lightbox ~
Eastern Screech Owl ~
The Eastern Screech Owl or Eastern Screech-Owl (Megascops asio) is a small owl that is relatively common in Eastern North America, from Mexico to Canada.
Adults range from 16 to 25 cm (6.3–10 in) in length and weigh 121-244 grams (4.3-8.6 oz). The wingspan can range from 46 to 61 cm (18 to 24 in). They have either rusty or dark gray intricately patterned plumage with streaking on the underparts. Mid-sized by screech-owl standards, these birds are stocky, short-tailed and broad-winged. They have a large round head with prominent ear tufts, yellow eyes and a yellowish bill. Rusty birds are more common in the southern parts of the range; pairings of the two color variants do occur. A pale gray variation also exists in western Canada and the north-central United States. The color variations are referred to as "red morph" and "gray morph" by bird watchers and ornithologists.
They are strictly nocturnal, roosting during the day in cavities or next to tree trunks. They are quite common, and can often be found in residential areas. Though they generally go unnoticed, these owls are frequently heard calling at night, especially during their spring breeding season. Despite their name, this owl (nor most "screech-owls") doesn't truly screech. The Eastern Screech-Owl's call is a haunting tremolo with a descending, whinny-like quality.