Barn Owl

Barn Owl


Allan came to us from friends in Scotland, as he is very much a home bird. He only likes to fly in an environment he is used to and refused to go anywhere else to do shows! So we brought him to Wales and showed him around The National Botanic Garden and he decided he liked it, so he stayed. He is 9 years old and makes a very sweet giggle noise when he gets excited. Hopefully he will live until he's around 20 years old with us, so a long time to go yet. He has started to respond well to a clicker, which means we can show you just how good a barn owl's hearing really is during our flying displays.


Barn Owl Facts

Tyto alba


The barn owl is found almost everywhere in the world except polar and desert regions, Asia north of the Himalayas, most of Indonesia, and some Pacific islands. Barn owls are not particularly territorial but have a home range inside which they forage.


Barn Owls require large areas of open land over which to hunt. This can either be marsh, grasslands, or mixed agricultural fields.


Barn owls specialise in hunting along the edges of woods or in rough grass strips adjoining pasture, it also hunts by day animals on the ground and nearly all of their food consists of small mammals which they locate by sound, their hearing being very acute.


They mate for life unless one of the pair gets killed, when a new pair bond may be formed. Breeding takes place at varying times of year according to locality, with a clutch, averaging about 4 eggs, being laid in a nest in a hollow tree, old building or fissure in a cliff.


Females being 33 and 39 cm long, 80 to 95 cm  wingspan.

Weighs 224 to 710 g


4  years old average age,

15 years oldest recorded in the wild , can live up to 20 years old in captivity however, most Barn Owls die young. Of those that fledge, approximately 70% die in their first year. 


Although the barn owl, is not considered to be a threatened species of animal, the barn owl population numbers have severely decreased over the years due to pollution and habitat loss as the barn owls are finding it harder and harder in some areas to find food. Despite this being true, the barn owl population in the UK is thought to be increasing again.


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