Barred owl

COMMON NAME: Barred owl

SCIENTIFIC NAME: Strix varia

IDENTIFYING CHARACTERISTICS:
An all-gray owl (although some individuals have a brown wash) streaked with white horizontal barring on the chest and vertical barring on the belly. It has a yellow beak and no tufts on the head. Its brown eyes distinguish it from the great gray owl.

RANGE:
Found in the United States and southern Canada east of the Rocky Mountains, although has been expanding range westward. This is causing concern, as it may compete with the endangered spotted owl.

HABITAT:
A woodland owl, associated with flood plains, river bottoms, and lake margins.

NESTING:
A cavity-nesting owl that will also nest in old crow or hawk nests or human-made structures.

FEEDING HABITS:
Barred owls feed on a variety of prey, including rodents, squirrels, rabbits, birds, and crustaceans.

RAPTOR CENTER DATA:

Another very common patient. Barred owls are generally docile patients, but can be very aggressive and attack when least expected.

CONSERVATION NOTES:

A very common species with no special status.