- Short-eared Owls are one of the most widespread bird species in the world, found on every continent except Australia and Antarctica.
- Yet, their numbers are in decline due to habitat degradation, predation by domestic dogs and cats, and poisoning from today’s agricultural practices.
- As ground nesters, these owls have to learn how to fight for their eggs and chicks. Under threat, adults often pretend to have a broken wing in order to draw a predator to them and away from their nest.
- Female Short-eared Owls are known to defecate on their eggs before leaving the nest as a potential threat approaches. The faeces expelled by females is putrid smelling, probably to discourage the predator from disturbing the eggs.