Whoo goes there? At R2, you might recognize a drawn-out hissing scream and recognize the call of a barn owl right away. Our redwoods are an ideal environment for barn owls, with an abundance of trees and wooded land for them to explore and call home. Here, Barn Owls have access to shelter and an abundance of food. We can always hear the loud hissing in our backyard, so if you come to visit, you’ll likely hear their cries, too!
If you don’t hear them, you can spot them by identifying the white heart-shaped face they wear with pride. Barn owls are medium-sized and have a white chest with small brown spots covering their feathers. Their backs are marked with a collage of black and white spots, making them hard to go unnoticed.
Barn owls are known for having a long wingspan of about 3.5 feet, helping them to be silent in flight. This helps them sneak up on prey or avoid becoming a snack for larger creatures while hunting at night. They have strong framing talons that make it easy to sneak up and collect their next meal in seconds.
Barn owls are about the size of a small house cat, but they only weigh about one pound total. When hunting at night, they have no problem finding their next meal. They are equipped with excellent vision and hearing for catching mice and other small rodents in complete darkness. This helps them find their prey when it’s sleeping, making the hunting process more simple. Talk about a surprise attack!
Be sure to watch out for these fascinating creatures on your next visit with us. If you hear a scream coming from a large tree, this may mean you have found one!
“Wisdom is the reward you get for lifetime of listening when you’d have preferred to talk”
~ Doug Larson