Latest update: 24 Jan 2013
Family: Owls (Strigidae)
Genus & Species : Athene cunicularia
Status: Common in many parts of the Imperial Valley, CA and around Yuma, AZ. Locally common around Phoenix and in Maricopa County, AZ.
Habitat: These small (9.5") but charismatic owls are easiest to find along dirt canals and sandy drainage banks in our area. They nest in burrows they have excavated (or expanded) in the soft dirt. Look for their whitewash and an accumulation of various types of scat to confirm their presence. They will also nest in man-made culverts and storm sewers around malls and other areas where the night lighting attracts their favorite insect prey.
Seen daily at: Imperial Valley, CA and Yuma, AZ
Best Chances: One reliable spot is along the Yuma Salinity Canal just east of the road to Cocopah RV Park.