Any of various small owls of the genus Megascops of the Americas, especially M. asio of eastern and central North America and M. kennicottii of western North America, having ear tufts and a quavering whistlelike call.
Any of various small New World owls (genus Otus) of a worldwide family (Strigidae), characterized by feathered ear tufts and an eerie, wailing cry rather than a hoot.
From the fact that these species are owls which emit screeching calls.
Screech-owl Sentence Examples
The Texas screech-owl, the Texas woodpecker, and the road runner, or ground cuckoo, are found mostly in southern and south-western Texas.
A southern portion of this zone, comprising a narrow strip along the Gulf Coast from Texas to Florida and up the Atlantic coast to South Carolina, is semi-tropical, and is the northernmost habitation of several small mammals, the alligator (Alligator mississippiensis), the ground dove, white-tailed kite, Florida screech owl and Chapman s night-hawk.
The barn owl is a familiar bird, famed for it rasping screech which accounts for its other name the ' screech owl ' .
Then a flip-flop: Asio otus is the long-eared owl, but Otus asio is the eastern screech owl.