Rare Bird Registry:

Help report Florida’s rare upland birds
Florida Burrowing Owl
Athene cunicularia floridana

      The Florida Burrowing Owl was recently added to the State’s list of Threatened species. FWC’s conservation objective is to create a stable or increasing population trend so that the species can persist in Florida. One of the conservation challenges for this rare species is a lack of distribution data. Your sightings will help us identify important locations for the owls, especially in rural areas where Burrowing Owls can be difficult to locate.


      The Florida Burrowing Owl is a small, ground dwelling owl with long legs. It is active both during the day and in the evening. It has a distinctive round head with a white eyebrow stripe and bright yellow eyes and may bob its head up and down when agitated. It is mostly brown with white spots on the back and buffy barring in the front.


      These owls prefer open prairie habitats and are often found nesting in small congregations. They will use both natural and human-modified habitats such as prairies, pastures, golf courses, and airports. They nest below ground in abandoned tortoise burrows or will excavate their own burrows.


Florida Burrowing Owl

Burrowing Owl chicks at nest

Additional Species Information
  1. Florida Wildlife Research Institute—Florida Burrowing Owl Profile Page
  2. Cornell Lab of Ornithology: All About Birds Page
  3. Where to See Burrowing Owls: The Florida Birding Trail

How You Can Participate:

Record your Florida burrowing owl sightings by using the interactive mapping tool below.

*Please submit sightings taken only during breeding season dates (1 March-30 June) as defined by the Florida Breeding Bird Atlas project, but YOU MAY ENTER THOSE SIGHTINGS AT ANY TIME.

Florida Burrowing Owl Observation Form
  1. You can enter your lat/long directly or you can use the red marker on the map to determine the coordinates.
  2. Drag the marker to the approximate location then zoom to help pin-point the desired location.
  3. Enter sighting date, observer name, contact email and phone.
  4. Provide a detailed description of the bird you observed in the comments including appearance and behavior.
  5. Photos of your sighting are encouraged: please upload using the boxes below.
  6. Click the Submit button below the date entry area.
  7. Please submit a new record for each individual bird you observed.
Is this the exact location of your sighting?


Open the calendar popup.


Submit pictures if available:
Allowed files - .pdf,.jpg,.png,.tif,.gif:


If you have any questions regarding this project, please contact: Dr. Karl Miller (FWRI Upland Nongame Bird Lead)

Thank you very much for your participation in this survey, your contributions to this effort are invaluable!

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