St. Ann's Catholic Primary School – Stocksbridge, Deepcar & Penistone

Barn Owls: Interesting Facts (Year 2 Research)

What do barn owls eat?

Barn owls live in a mixed farmland landscape, along with hedgerows and small woodland. Their main prey is the field vole, but they also prey on bank voles, shrews, mice, rats and small birds. It is actually not that uncommon for some barn owl chicks to eat each other when in the nest

Barn owls swallow their prey whole, and then spit out the hair and bones in the form of neat thumb sized pellets.

A wild Barn Owl eats about 4 small mammals every night, that’s 1,460 per year!

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Length: 33-39cm (about the size of a small cat!)

Wingspan: 89cm

Weight: 300g

Lifespan: 2-4 years

Barn Owls’ large eyes are very sensitive, they can quickly spot a mouse moving in a very gloomy barn.

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Barn Owl feathers are super soft – this helps them to hunt silently, but they are not very waterproof and get soaked if it rain.

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Staying Safe

If barn owls feel threatened (scared) they will squint their eyes, spread their wings and sway their head back and forth while hissing.

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If this does not stop their attacker, the barn owl will lie on its back and protect itself with its sharp talons.