Today we've added one of the cutest birds I've ever seen: the Northern Saw-whet Owl. At 7 to 8 inches (17.8 to 20.3 cm) this is the smallest owl of Eastern North America. This cute little fellow got its name by accident when a member of the National Audubon Society heard the call of a Barn Owl, which is said to resemble a saw being sharpened, and mistakenly attributed it to the smaller owl. Since 1997, the Ned Smith Center in Pennsylvania has been leading research in the movements and ecology of the Saw-whet Owl. Each autumn, a team of trained researchers and volunteers harmlessly catch, band and release hundreds of these small birds at three banding stations in central Pennsylvania. Throughout the years they've banded more than 5,000 owls and helped map the movements of this secretive species. For more information about this great project check out the Saw-whet Owl Research Blog.
For more Birdorable owls see Meet the Birds: Owls.