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 1:51:35 PM (CST) Monday, July 02, 2012

Owl Series: Barn Owl Facts

Common Name(s): Barn Owl, Monkey-Faced Owl, Ghost Owl, Golden Owl, and many more!

Scientific Name: Tyto alba

Approximate Wing Span 235-323 mm.

Approximate Life Span: 1-2 years

Natural Habitat: Live in almost all habitats


The Common Barn Owl is considered a medium-sized predator with a ghost-like, pale appearance located in nearly every part of the world. With its long, rounded wings and extended legs, this dark eyed, nocturnal bird of prey is built to quickly swoop down and catch its victims with ease. If you live in meadowlands or grasslands don’t be surprised if you see this “ghost” plunge to the ground right before your eyes!


As stated, these birds live in practically every facet of the world where there are open areas such as woodlands, grasslands, fields and even urban areas. These wide spread locations enable the bird to fly over long distances to pinpoint their prey. This owl is also known to be prevalent in farmlands and plantations that contain a few trees, abandoned houses, or open barns where they can roost. You will not find these birds in extremely cold areas because of the lack of food availability.

Food & Hunting

Barn Owls are known for their keen sense of hearing that enables them to locate their prey over large distances. In fact, this species of owl is able to catch its prey in total darkness by memorizing the sounds related to each type of animal it preys on. They mostly hunt for food during the crack of dusk or when the sun is completely down.

This type of owl primarily hunts rodents making them a prized possession among farmers. From mice to rats and even small rabbits, barn owls can effectively control these rodent populations that destroy crops and spread disease. Barn Owls also tend to hunt fish, reptiles, insects and even other birds.

Behavior & Habits

This species is usually nocturnal, but it is not unusual to spot them at the crack of dusk or dawn. They’re also seen in full daylight at times. This species is known to defend its nests, but is not territorial when it comes to hunting.


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