Wilson, Alexander, 1766-1813. / American ornithology; or The natural history of the birds of the United States
Species 6. Strix brachyotos. Short-eared owl, pp. -132
SPECIES 6. STRIX BRICHYOTOS. SHORT-EARED OWL. [Plate XXXIII.-Fig. 3.] BURTON Syst. p. 167.--.rct. Zool. p. 229, No. 11 6.-LATH. I, 124.-La Chouettd, ou la Grand Cheveche, BUFF. I, Pl. eni. 438.-PEALE'S 4iUuseuvi, JVo. 440.* THIS is another species common to both continents, being found in Britain as far north as the Orkney isles, where it also breeds; building its nest upon the ground, amidst the heath; ar- rives and disappears in the south parts of England with the Woodcock, that is in October and April; consequently does not breed there. It is called at Hudson's bay the Mouse Hawk; and is described as not flying like other Owls in search of prey; but sitting quiet on a stump of a tree, watching for mice. It is said to be found in plenty in the woods near Chatteau bay, on the coast of Labrador. In the United States it is also a bird of passage, coming to us from the north in November, and depart- ing in April. The bird represented in the plate was shot in New Jersey, a few miles below Philadelphia, in a thicket of pines. It has the stern aspect of a keen, vigorous, and active bird; and is reputed to be an excellent mouser. It flies frequent- ly by day, particularly in dark cloudy weather, takes short flights, and, when sitting and looking sharply around, erects the two slight feathers that constitute its horns, which are at such times very noticeable; but otherwise not perceivable. No person, on slightly examining this bird after being shot, would suspect it to be furnished with horns; nor are they discovered but by careful search, or previous observation on the living bird. * We add the following synonymes: Strix brachyotos, LATH. Ind. Orn. p. 55. -Strix Ulula, laxw. Syst. ed. 10, p. 93-TE;MM. l Man. ('Oni. s, p. 99.
Based on date of publication, this material is presumed to be in the public domain.| For information on re-use, see http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/Copyright