Where Do Owls Live? Everything You Need To Know

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  • Post last modified:April 25, 2022

Owls Perching on a Tree Branch

Owls are fascinating birds of prey that can be found all over the world, and they are incredibly intelligent. There are more than 200 species on the planet, each with its own set of characteristics that enable it to survive in its environment.

Please continue reading if you are an owl enthusiast or have an owl in your neighborhood. We will look at which countries have the greatest number of owl species and what types of environments you are most likely to find these birds in.

Where Do Owls Live?

With the exception of Antarctica, owls can be found in every country on the planet. They are also quite rare in Greenland, and it is most probable that you will only come across them near the coast.

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In addition, owls are absent from several of Russia’s most remote and northern islands. Throughout the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii, you may find them in all 50 of the country’s states.

Owl Sleeping in a tree hole

Why Can’t I See Any Owls?

The vast majority of owls are nocturnal species that live in extreme seclusion and obscurity. Since they blend in nicely with their environment and can remain still, moving just their head, it’s not surprising that many people have never seen one despite the fact that owls can be found in every state in America.

Where Do Owl Nest?

Owls do not spend a lot of time building ornate nests, preferring instead to take over an abandoned bird nest when the opportunity presents itself. An abandoned crow, hawk, or blue heron nest is the appropriate size for them, and they will choose it as their initial nesting site.

Owl Sleeping in a tree hole 1

If they are unable to locate an abandoned nest, they will most likely choose a hole in a tree or cactus, and if none of these options are available, they will hunt for something comparable where they can obtain adequate shelter without having to put in a lot of effort.

Why Owls Choose To Reside In Barns?

Owls are known for their slow and silent flight. When it comes to hunting grounds for these animals, the wide-open fields and roads of a farm provide an excellent setting.

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Barns are often positioned in the centre of a property and have small apertures or an open window that an owl can exploit to enter the barn and build a nest in the rafters with relative ease.

Do Owls Change Habitats?

Owls are predatory animals that rely on a local food source for survival. If the owl’s food supply becomes depleted, the owl will seek a new home.

There are a variety of variables that can contribute to an owl running out of food, including the presence of too many owls or other predators in a given area.

Snowy Owl sitting in a snow

Owls, like other birds of prey such as the falcon and the hawk, feed largely on tiny rodents, which is similar to their diet. The most hazardous predator for these small rodents, on the other hand, is generally the common house cat, which will kill mice even if it is not hungry for the meat they provide.

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A small colony of feral cats can swiftly deplete the local food supply to the point that the owl is forced to leave its territory. It is also possible for an owl to relocate as a result of climate and environmental change.

What Is An Owl Box?

An owl box is a type of owl nest that has been built by humans. In essence, it’s a large square or rectangular bird’s nest with a pattern that’s designed for owls that you can place in a barn or at the top of a large pole to entice an owl to come into it.

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You can make one out of scrap wood or buy one from a store, and they work fairly well, especially if you live near a vast open field where the owl can go hunting for food.

burrowing owl in his nest

What Is The Best Way To Locate An Owl’s Nest?

1. Perform some basic research to see which owl species can be found in your area. Find out everything you can about these owls, including their appearance, size, and the type of environment in which they prefer to live, before you go out and look for them. Do owls in your area favor barns or trees as a nesting site? Some species have even established underground enclaves.

2. Make use of the information you’ve gathered in the first stage to identify areas in your neighborhood where owls are likely to be found. Look for wooded settings, such as state parks, with big open spaces nearby, so that the owl can fly leisurely and catch mice and other small rodents, which is what you want.

Barn owl perching in a tree trunk

3. Take it gradually and listen closely for the unique “hoot” sound as you walk into a grove or woodland area that does not have underbrush. Owls will typically make this sound at any time of day, however it is more difficult to detect it throughout the night.

4. In the event that you hear the sound or believe there is an owl around, you should begin checking for owl droppings near the base of the tree trunks. It has the same appearance as most other bird excrement, however it is found near the base of a tree rather than on your vehicle’s windshield. You may also come across owl pellets, which are clumps of feathers and bones that are the remains of food that the owl has consumed.

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5. Once you’ve discovered owl poop, you may begin searching higher up in the tree for spots that the owl might be using as a nesting site. Broken branches, holes, and indentations in the ground are all suitable spots for an owl to build a nest.

6. In the event that you come upon an owl nest, there is a considerable probability that there will be one or more owls within, especially if you visit during the day, so proceed with caution so as not to disturb them.

Do Owl Live In Old Forests?

Owls typically live in dark forests, both because they’re less likely to be spotted by prey or predators and because there are more insects to eat. So it makes sense that barn owls, which primarily eat rodents, like to live near farms.

In North America and Europe, where their numbers have declined dramatically in recent decades due to a loss of habitat.

Grey Owl Hooting in the forest

Do Owl Not Live In Cities?

They also do not live in cities! Although they can survive there if they have to. Due to their adaptability and large range, they are considered one of North America’s most common birds.

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Owls always prefer to have plenty of room for them to hunt and fly freely. The less human interference, the better. Great Horned Owls live in a wide range of natural habitats, including desert, forest, and grassland areas.

Are Owls Nocturnal?

Owls are nocturnal, meaning they hunt at night. While owls can certainly fly during daylight hours, they prefer to be up at night because their prey species — mostly insects and other small animals — are more active when it’s dark.

Are Owls Very Territorial?

One of the most important things to know about owl habitats is that they are very territorial. For instance, if you’re in a place where barred owls live, and you’re running your own business, they will be watching everything you do.

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They are very protective of their territory, and if they see an intruder – even something as small as a squirrel – it’s unlikely that they will leave you alone until either you or their competitor has been dealt with.

Owl in a tree trunk

Do Owls Camouflage?

Being able to blend in with their surroundings makes it harder for predators to find them. The patterns on their feathers also keep them warm and can help them hide when they’re sleeping.

Their large eyes allow them to see at night so that they can hunt more effectively. Most of these adaptations are for nighttime activities, but some species of owl are active during daylight hours as well, such as fishing owls and burrowing owls.

How Owls Make Their Nest?

Unlike some other birds of prey, owls build their own nests. They often choose old hawk or crow nests for a home, but will also construct them on natural ledges, cliff faces and in hollow trees.

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These structures are built with sticks, twigs and leaves collected by female owls while they’re out hunting at night. They line these nests with grasses, feathers and fur to keep eggs and young healthy.

burrowing owl on the ground

Where Do Owls Make Their Nest?

There’s a reason that owls are associated with wisdom. Many species of owl will build their nests on tree branches—at about 4-10 feet off of the ground. This height allows for good visibility of their prey, while keeping them relatively safe from other larger predators like foxes and hawks.

Do Owls Mate For Life?

Unlike many birds, which change partners frequently, owls typically mate for life. Though it’s not unheard of for an owl to look outside of their relationship for a new partner (for instance, when one dies), they almost always stay together through thick and thin.

Baby Owls in their nest

When Do Baby Owls Fly?

Baby owls are able to fly at about 6 weeks old. Most people don’t realize that owlets can fly so young, so if you see a young owl perched in a tree, it’s not a fledgling—it’s just an unusually precocious one!

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Does Eurasian Eagle Owl Is The Largest Owl Species?

They can weigh up to 5.5 pounds and reach a length of 24 inches. They are diurnal, meaning they hunt during daylight hours.

Because of their large size, these owls will generally only eat medium to large-sized mammals like hares and rabbits, which they typically swallow whole after decapitating them with their razor sharp talons.

Take Away Message

Owls may be found all over the world, and although many of us have never seen one, they are not difficult to come across when you look.

They prefer to take over abandoned nests or use a natural protective shelter rather than establishing a nest, though there are a few species that can be seen during the day. They also prefer to take over abandoned nests rather than creating a nest.

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