Eastern Barn Owl – hissing screech nocturnal bird

Eastern Barn Owl

Eastern Barn Owl is a medium-sized owl that is very common in Asia and Australia. They have a heart like a face, sandy orange upperparts and white cream underparts. This owl is smaller and lighter than Masked Owl.

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Eastern Barn Owl Distribution

This owl can be found throughout much of the mainland of Australia.

As this is a widespread species it can also be seen in the Indian subcontinent and southeast Asia.

In Australia, during the dry season, they migrate to the northern coast, and back southward in the wet. Also, they move along with rodent plagues to make feeding easy. In 2008, for the first time, this owl was breeding in New Zealand.

Eastern Barn Owl Habitat

It favours open woodlands, grasslands and rural areas. During the day, the owl rests in hollow logs, caves or trees to finally emerge at night and hunt for small mammals, rats, mice, birds, insects or even lizards.

Interestingly, in some Pacific Islands, they can also hunt during the day.

What sound do they make?

It makes rasping and screeching sounds.

Is this owl endangered?

No, their conservation status is ‘least concern’ (LC). However, they are susceptible to cold winters that can reduce their population. Pasture conversions into sites for crops and urbanisation can cause loss of habitat for birds living in the affected areas.

Eastern Barn Lifespan

The usual lifespan is between 2 to 4 years, but there are documented cases in captivity for up to 30 years.

Our encounters

Like most owls, they are nocturnal so the only chance we could see this amazing animal was in the zoo or sanctuary.

Eastern Barn Owl – more information


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