Burrowing Owl (Athene cunicularia) is a medium-sized (23-28 cm) diurnal owl with an extensive distribution, ranging across deserts and grasslands of the western U.S., Mexico, Central America, and South America. They are known for living in abandoned mammal burrows that they may enlarge. Burrows may originally be dug by prairie dogs (Cynomys spp.), ground squirrels, or other species. As prairie dog populations have declined, so have Burrowing Owls.