Family III. STRIGINAE. OWLS.
GENUS III. STRIX, Linn. SCREECH-OWL
Bill short, compressed, deep, strong; upper mandible with is dorsal outline straight to the end of the cere, then curved, the sides nearly flat and erect, the tip deflected, with a rounded but sharp-edged point; lower mandible with the dorsal line convex, the sides convex, the edges arched, the tip obliquely truncate. Conch of the ear semicircular, extending from over the anterior angle of the eye to the middle of the lower jaw; aperture large, somewhat square, with an anterior operculum fringed with feathers. Legs rather long, tarsus long, feathered, scaly at the lower part; toes large, the first short, the inner nearly as long as the middle, all with series of small tuberculiform oblong scales, intermixed with a few bristles, and three broad scutella at the end. Claws arched, long, extremely sharp, the edge of the third thin and transversely cracked in old birds. Plumage very soft and downy; facial disks complete. Wings long, ample, rounded; the first quill with the filaments recurved. Tail rather short, even.