Eastern Screech Owl


Eastern screech-owls have acute senses of hearing and vision which help them to locate prey in dim light. They use a variety of vocalizations. Nestlings and females call softly from within the nest cavity. Both males and females give the “trill” song, which may be used to advertise nest sites, in courting, when arriving at the nest with food, and to call nestlings out of the nest for fledging. Other calls are hoots, rasps, chuckle-rattles, barks, and screeches.

Eastern screech-owls eat the most varied diet of any North American owl. Their diet includes large evening active insects, like moths and katydids, crayfish, earthworms, amphibians, reptiles, small mammals, like mice and bats, and small birds

Eastern screech-owls are sometimes the most abundant and important small predator in urban and suburban forested areas.

Click HERE for an Eastern Screech Owl Activity Sheet!

Our Current Residents

Scout, Male – Hatched 2009 (estimate)

Scout came to ZooMontana in 2012 after a car strike blinded him in his left eye. Scout's calm demeanor makes him a popular education ambassador.


  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Aves
  • Order: Strigiformes
  • Family: Strigidae
  • Genus: Otus
  • Species: Otus asio

Animal Facts

  • Carnivore
  • Common
  • Forest
  • Nocturnal

Our Animals