The bay owls are a genus of Old World barn-owls. The defining characteristics of bay owls are their smaller bodies, in comparison to other barn owls, and their U- or V-shaped faces. These owls can be found in South to Southeast Asia, and parts of central Africa within forest and grassland ecosystems.
The bay owl can be found in regions from India to Southeast Asia and Indonesia, as well as parts of central Africa. It is uncertain where the ancestors of these avians lived as the phylogeny of all species of bay owls has not been analyzed. These owls can be found in both forests and grasslands, but are fairly scattered in their distribution. However, their primary habitat is within dense evergreen forests, where the owls may roost during the day in the opening of tree trunks or branches sheltered by palm tree leaves. They are often found roosting no more than 2 meters off the ground. They are most vulnerable in this state and not very alert.