Our smallest owl, the Elf Owl, is 5-1/2 inches long. It has yellow eyes and a very short tail. It lacks ear tufts. It is buff-colored
with indistinct dark streaks. The Elf Owl can be readily found in desert lowlands and in
canyons, especially in oaks and sycamores; it is fairly common in foothills and generally scarce and declining in Texas and
California. It breeds in southeastern California, southern Arizona, southwestern New Mexico, and Rio Grande Valley of Texas.
It winters in Mexico.It is strictly nocturnal and roosts and nests in cavities in saguaros and trees. Its call is an irregular
series of high churp's and chattering notes.
Three white eggs are laid in a deserted woodpecker hole in a cactus or an oak, pine or other tree.
captured, this tiny owl likes to play opossum and feigns death until it is sure that all danger has passed. It feeds almost
exclusively on insects, catching them in the air or on the ground. It will also eat mice and lizards.