Owl, the Common, or Strix Flammea, L. a well-known British bird, the elegant plumage and other good qualities of which, amply compensate tor the ugliness of its form.

This species of the owl may be considered almost a domestic bird : it inhabits, during the greater part of the year, barns, hay-lofts, and other out-houses ; where it is as Useful as the congenial cat, for clearing those places from predatory vermin, especially mice. Towards twilight, this bird quits its perch, takes a regular circuit round the adjacent fields in quest of prey, and speedily returns to its usual abode. It may be easily distinguished by a hooting and snoring noise; but, when on the wing, it utters the most frightful screams. From the peculiar structure of their eyes, owls enjoy a very distinct; vision in the dawn, or evening; though, in a dark night, they can see no more than other animals.

As the young of these birds keep their nest for a considerable time, and are fed long after they can fly, hundreds of mice become necessary for supplying them with food. hence, their breed ought, by every able means, to be encouraged. ides, they may be employed with great advantage for decoying other birds, particularly crows, that-are easily attracted by the uncommon figure of the owl, the beak and legs of which are singularly covered with downy feathers.