The more than 200 species of owls live in a variety of habitats, including coniferous forests, deserts, mountains and plains. Owls are found across all continents except Antarctica.
Many owls, including the great gray and great horned species, live in old hawk or squirrel nests, while some, such as the snowy owl of the cold tundra and the short-eared owl, nest on the ground. Burrowing owls live in old mammal burrows, and others prefer to nest in tree cavities. Most owls sleep during the day and emerge at night to hunt. Depending on the breed, these birds of prey may migrate during colder months or remain in the same area all year.