Nests in semi-open to open country, with trees, poles, and cliffs. In B.C., found from sea level to at least 1,770 m in elevation and breeding habitat includes trembling aspen groves, woodland edges, river bottomlands, wooded lakeshores, farmlands, burns, meadows, marshes, bogs, and infrequently residential areas (Campbell et al. 1990). In the Yukon, this species is also found in alpine and tundra areas not far from treeline and in open spruce and mixed spruce/aspen forests (Alexander et al. 2003).
Nests in natural holes in trees, abandoned woodpecker holes, holes in buildings or cliffs, abandoned magpie nests, and similar sites.
Alexander, S. A., F. I. Doyle, C. D. Ecker, H. Grünberg, N. L. Hughes, M. Jensen, I. Johnson, D. H. Mossop, W. A. Nixon, and P. H. Sinclair. 2003. Birds of the Yukon Territory (P. H. Sinclair, W. A. Nixon, C. D. Eckert, and N. L. Hughes, eds.). UBC Press, Vancouver, B.C.
Campbell, R. W., N. K. Dawe, I. McTaggart-Cowan, J. M. Cooper, G. W. Kaiser, and M. C. E. McNall. 1990. The Birds of British Columbia. Vol. 1 and 2, Nonpasserines. UBC Press, Vancouver, B.C.