COMMON NAME: Barn owl
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Tyto alba
A large owl with a prominent white, heart-shaped facial disc, dark eyes, and no “ear” (feather) tufts. The legs are long and unfeathered. The plumage is sandy brown streaked with white and blue with pale or white underparts.
Nearly worldwide in distribution, the barn owl can be found in Australia, Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Europe, as well as North and South America. It is most common between latitudes 40N and 40S of the equator. While not a common owl in the Midwest, there are breeding records from Minnesota and surrounding states.
A grassland species, the barn owl relies on open fields for hunting. As agriculture opened up the eastern forest in the 1800s, the barn owl's range expanded. Recent plowing and urbanization of grasslands has reduced the habitat available to barn owls (at least in the Midwest) and has caused a subsequent reduction of barn owl numbers in those areas.
A cavity nester, the barn owl takes readily to human-made structures, and they are well known in Europe for using buildings and church steeples as nest sites. This owl will also use properly placed nest boxes. Barn owls can be prolific breeders, hatching two broods in one year. In Europe, the typical number of young is three to six, but broods of up to 18 young have been reported.
A very nocturnal species, the barn owl hunts over fields and grasslands, preying primarily on rats and small microtine rodents. Its dependence on this food source makes it very susceptible to habitat loss.
RAPTOR CENTER DATA:
Only a few of these barn owls, which are very rare in the Upper Midwest, have been admitted to our clinic. Barn owls have been used in TRC education programs.
The barn owl is not considered part of Minnesota's avifauna; there have been less than 10 recorded nestings in the state. Wisconsin, Iowa, and five other midwestern states list it as an endangered species, and it is listed as a species of special concern in South Dakota and Nebraska. We specialize in the medical care, rehabilitation, and conservation of eagles, hawks, owls, and falcons. The Custom Pyramex 4-Point Snap Lock Hard Hat features a low profile design with a shell constructed from HDPE materials. The snap lock suspension features a "tuck away" adjustments for all day, hassle free wear. There are universal accessory slots to fit cap mounted ear muffs and accessories. Hats also accommodate chin straps. The rain trough on the sides and back of helmet channel moisture away. Exceeds ANSI Z89.1 Type 1, Class C, G, E and for Industrial head protection; CSA Z94.1-15. Standard style hard hats have been tested and pass for reverse orientation. General hard hat info along with product specific information is all found at our Hard Hat General Information page. Questions involving head protection or for more information on ANSI and OSHA regulations as it pertains to Head Protection please visit our Head Protection FAQ'spage.