A cute little owl stares out of a hole in a sycamore tree today. Located on a dry river bottom in West Texas, this one-of-a-kind owl is none other than the elf owl. Among all owl species, the elf owl is considered to be the smallest.
Its height is less than 6 inches and its weight is less than an ounce and a half. Technically, this owl is similar to a golf ball. The elf owl hunts cold-bloodedly. It comes out of its hollow during the night to hunt for prey such as crickets, beetles, spiders, lizards, and mice.
Even poisonous creatures like scorpions are not safe from these merciless hunters. The scorpions are then stored in the nest to be eaten whenever they feel like it after the stingers have been removed. You can find elf owls in woods and desert cactus environments in Southwest Texas and Southern Arizona. Desert areas typically have these birds living in woodpecker holes made in saguaro cacti.
Elf owls may appear very silent, but they are undoubtedly deadly. As air flows across the elf owl’s wings, a rushing sound is heard. During spring, the female lays 1-4 eggs, which hatch after three weeks. At first, the father elf owl hunts for food for the mother and chicks, but after some time, the mother elf owl also gets involved in the hunt.
When attacked by predators like great-horned owls, these birds flee rather than fight. In order to avoid predators, they even play dead.
During October, elf owls migrate to Mexico due to the warmer latitude and abundance of insects there. During springtime in Southwest America, these cute little owls begin nesting.