The Boreal Owl

Ecology, Behaviour and Conservation of a Forest-Dwelling Predator

The Boreal Owl

Widespread in North American forest regions including the Rocky Mountains, the Boreal Owl (Aegolius funereus) was once the most numerous predatory bird in Eurasian boreal forests. Synthesising the results of unique long-term studies of Boreal Owls, this book explores hunting modes, habitats and foods, prey interactions, mating and parental care, reproduction, dispersal, survival and mortality, population regulation and conservation in boreal forests. Providing a detailed introduction to the species, the authors study the complex interactions of Boreal Owls with their prey species. They examine the inter-sexual tug-of-war over parental care, and the behavioural and demographic adaptations to environmental conditions that predictably and markedly fluctuate both seasonally and multi-annually. They also question whether Boreal Owls are able to time their reproductive effort to maximise lifetime reproductive success. Discussing the effect of modern forestry practices on owl populations, the book also examines how Boreal Owls could be managed to sustain viable populations.


"A must-have for those with a technical interest in the species."
The Birdbooker Report

"Behavioral and population ecologists will find much value in this highly accessible book. Recommended."
R. L. Smith, Choice

"Most texts on owls are descriptive, and so this one is unusual in having so much scientific research on a single species … the content is interesting … deserves to be found in libraries."
Jim Lynch, The Biologist

"All in all, the book provides an outlet for documenting research on boreal owls over four decades, which clearly took tremendous effort and dedication; few other studies will match this one in extent and duration. It should serve to inspire future investigations and I suspect will also serve as a reminder on how challenging it is to conduct such a study."
Daniel K. Rosenberg, Ecology

"This sumptuous book, written by the world’s foremost boreal owl experts and chock full of interesting information … is literally 'worth its weight in gold' … It is highly recommended for every university library and for every keen owl student throughout the world."
C. Stuart Houston, The Canadian Field-Naturalist