Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Fred J. Alsop III

Committee Members

Thomas Laughlin, Istvan Karsai


Little is known about the distribution, abundance, or life histories of the Northern Saw-whet Owl (Aegolius acadicus) in the Southern Appalachian Mountains of Northeast Tennessee. This study relied upon the Pennsylvania Protocol of audio playback of a Northern Saw-whet Owl call to monitor for owl presence at various areas above 3,500 feet in elevation. Owls were found at multiple areas in Northeast Tennessee, including Roan Mountain, Unaka Mountain, Rocky Fork, and the Pond Mountain Area. Statistical analysis revealed that these owls were not limited by habitat, showing equal presence in Hardwood habitats along with Spruce and/or Fir habitats. Data also revealed that the owls showed a statistical preference for higher elevations at the surveyed sites. The habitat and elevation preferences, coupled with the locations where owls were detected, allow for a greater understanding of the life histories and population distribution of the Northern Saw-whet Owl in the Southern Appalachian Mountains.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.

Included in

Biology Commons