The barn owl is a raptor, a nocturnal bird of prey like other owls. Eagles, falcons and hawks are also raptors, but they live by day. Barn owls like to live in barns; that's how they got their name. They've always adapted to man-made structures like attics, silos, steeples, and, of course, man-made nesting boxes.
EQUIPMENT CHECK All raptors have strong grasping talons for killing prey, and a hooked upper beak for tearing meat. Rodents are the barn owl's meal of choice, and he can locate and acquire a rodent in total darkness, thanks to a keen set of eyes and an even keener pair of ears. A barn owl's "satellite dish" face helps pick up the faintest leaf rustle or mouse peep from hundreds of feet away. His ears are positioned at about eye level, just behind the ridge of facial feathers. One ear is positioned higher than the other as part of a cool 3D hearing system.
A barn owl is about the size of a small cat, but only weighs a pound. it's huge 42" wingspan accommodates slow silent flight - silent due to soft fringe-edged feathers that don't "swoosh" as they move. Silent flight means curtains for an unsuspecting rodent.