Wednesday, 17 September 2008

The Barn Owl - Species at Risk

[1]


The Barn Owl is nocturnal, hunting for mice, voles and rats, taking its prey back to the nesting site. Roosts are chosen in well-hidden corners of old buildings or tree holes and cliff edges as the bird's white plumage makes camouflage difficult. It returns to the same breeding site each year to lay 5 - 11 white eggs on a bare surface, with incubation carried out by the female for 5 weeks while the male feeds her. Although their habitat is widespread, the Barn Owl population is declining and this bird has been placed on Ontario's species at risk list.

The Snowy Owl is whiter with a smaller head and yellow eyes.


[2-Owl dinner]



Research: The Field Guide to the Birds of North America by Michael Vanner
Photo Credits: [1][2]-jack1962

18 comments:

Pam said...

Oh Barbara, I don't know which I love more, the owl or the mouse. Thank you for posting a "creature-feature".Delightful. Good luck little mouse!

RuneE said...

No wonder they say that owls look wise - this one would qualify for professor at once!

gary rith said...

You have to love owls!!!

BernardL said...

This may give you some hope. I read an article this past June about the Barn Owl population in Nantucket growing exponentially, although it doesn't mean huge numbers. They used boxes mounted around ten feet off the ground to attract them. Maybe similar nesting attractions in other places would work.

Charles Gramlich said...

Owls are such beautiful and interesting creatures. I used to see them a lot in Arkansas when I was growing up, but the population of most of them have declined.

Barbara Martin said...

Pam, nice to see you back. Dennis would like the wee mouse too, I'm sure.

RunE, I think all owls would qualify. Even the Pygmy Owls.

Gary, they are around early in the morning or at dusk. When I had dogs I would take them for walks down to the lake passing a grove of trees. They would 'hoot' sometimes and then, from the sound, you could see where they were perched.

Barbara Martin said...

Bernard, when humans assist birds, especially the predators, they help the environment.

Charles, while walking in High Park last fall I was surprised when I heard an owl 'hoot' almost just over my head. I turned just as it launched itself onto a higher branch.

laughingwolf said...

since mice carry the hanta virus, amongst other diseases: sic im, owlie!

Reya Mellicker said...

Beautiful pics. Owls are so otherworldly, aren't they? Wow.

You're so right that angels smell like baby powder. I never thought about it, but yes! yes!!

Glad to find your blog. Thank you!

preTzel said...

There is nothing more comforting, to me, than laying in my tent while camping and listening to the hoo-hoot of owls in the trees and their flight is so gorgeous. I love owls.

Steve Malley said...

Owls are pretty neat. I likes em!

Barbara Martin said...

Tony, when one has mice in their house or apartment you have to be careful when poisoning or your pet dog or cat could end up very sick or dead. I find traps messy...this natural method with owls is much tidier.

Reya, ever since Harry Potter got an owl they have become much more noticeable.

preTzel, if the owls are hooting then there are no larger predators around.

Barbara Martin said...

Steve, there are to be more owl posts. I read somewhere that owls could be trained with jesses just like hawks.

The Dutchess said...

Dear Barbara,thank you for directing me your way,your blog is wonderful.I will be back after my blogbreak to visit ..I love your blog!:)

laughingwolf said...

indeed, barbara...

Barbara Martin said...

Dutchess, welcome and enjoy your visit.

Chris McClure aka Panhandle Poet said...

We have lots of the barn owls in our area. Many meet up with trucks on the road at night.

Barbara Martin said...

Chris, how sad for the owls and us.