Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The Acadian owl, Nyctala acadica: so called from its rasping notes, which resemble the sounds made in filing or sharpening a saw. It is one of the smallest owls of North America, only from 7½ to 8 inches long, and from 17 to 18 in extent of wings, the wing itself 5½. The bill is black and the eyes are yellow. The plumage is much variegated with brown, reddish, gray, and white, the facial disk being mostly white. It is widely distributed in North America. The name is sometimes extended to a larger congeneric species, N. richardsoni, of arctic America. See cut under
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Zoöl.) A small North American owl (Nyctale Acadica), destitute of ear tufts and having feathered toes; -- called also
“The saw-whet owl (Aegolius acadicus), a species of special concern in North Carolina, often roosts during the day in red spruce trees of 66i and nests in cavity trees such as yellow birch or in nest boxes set out for flying squirrels.”
“Christmas time's a Coming, as Bill Monroe sang many years ago, and while that turns many folks 'thoughts to gift wrap, carols, chestnuts on the fire and three wise men visiting the manger, it also means hot coffee, frigid mornings, frozen fingers and listening for the call of the saw-whet owl for others.”
“Combine that with the saw-whet owl I saw at twilight last week near the cathedral something perhaps to do with the massive amounts of squirrels in my area, perhaps and I am thumbs up for animals.”
“Cannings goes on to talk about the circumstances surrounding the song of the saw-whet owl:”
“There is little consensus in the literature as to which is the "saw-whet" call after which the species is named.”
“And from a monograph on the saw-whet, on the topic of its song:”
“And one other source offers the following tidbits of information on the saw-whet:”
“Black-backed woodpeckers feed on the darkened trunks of dead trees, while northern saw-whet owls raise young in the cavities.”
“If you are lucky you will spy a tiny gray form huddled close to the sheltered side of the bark, and if you are careful you may approach and catch in your hand the smallest of all our owls, for the saw-whet is a dreadfully sleepy fellow in the daytime.”
“It was the 'water-dripping' song of the saw-whet owl.”
These user-created lists contain the word ‘saw-whet’.
Adjectives used in actual (non-taxonomic) bird names, past and present.
These kind of stun me whenever I see them. Language is just so cool.
Looking for tweets for saw-whet.