Sunday, 5 June 2016

Barn Owls





I was pacing the house last night suffering from chocolate withdrawal symptoms (I had forgotten to buy any on my last shopping trip). While I was standing at the window dreaming of Cadbury’s Dairy Milk Chocolate I was treated to a stunning owl flying display.  Barney Owl suddenly swooped down from the tower and glided across the courtyard before settling into the open window of the barn.  He perched on the sill and looked around for a few minutes before disappearing into the barn.  A few minutes later another owl swooped down, presumably Mrs Barney Owl.  She flew into the open grange and perched on a large beam.  She didn’t stay there long, flying out and back into the tower with a mouse between her claws, no doubt dinner for their young.  So much owl activity in one evening.

See original image



Our barn owls have been in residence in the roof of our pigeonnier ever since we moved here.  The top windows of the tower are completely open to allow them free entry and exit.  We didn’t have the heart to evict them and shutter the windows.  Paul once climbed through the bathroom ceiling to explore the top room of the tower. (I had visions of it being my very own studio or hideaway.  I could pretend to be Rapunzel and grow my hair long.)

 
Owls' Entrance into the Tower
However, he discovered that there wasn’t enough headroom for it to be a viable living space.  He took some photographs and it seems that the owls actually live in the very top part of the tower.

Barn Owls Roost in the Tower
If you look very closely you can see the white underside of the owl roosting on the top of the beam to the right of the centre point.

It will not be long before the young ones fledge and I shall be able to enjoy their unwieldly attempts at learning to fly.




10 comments:

  1. Lucky you Sue. We too have them in a barn on our farm, but not near enough to the farmhouse to really observe them.

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    1. I saw them again this evening. I'm wondering now if they are the young ones.

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  2. Excellent to have the Barn Owls living so close for they are experts at keeping down the mice population.

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  3. We have barn owls here and in fact they are quite plentiful as I see barn owls hunting along which ever route i take to the station in the mornings. Very nice. That tower looks like the ideal home for them.

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    1. Do you see your owls in daylight? Ours only come out at dusk. Although maybe I just don't get up early enough in the mornings.

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    2. Yes, I see them at around about 7.15 am to 7.30am on my way to the station. In the evening they cross my garden to my neighbours owl box when it is still light. My brother also has barn owls in his owl box and knows exactly their feeding times and it is always in daylight, early morning and late evening. Other owls are night owls.

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  4. My first home on my own was a barn conversion and when I walked the dog out last thing at night there was a 'noise' from another old barn. It gave me the jitters and my Dad thought it was owls. I had half convinced myself that it was a knight of the road as it sounded like heavy breathing. Not a lot of 2whit or 2woo.

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    1. My daughters used to think the house was haunted and that there was someone breathing heavily.

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  5. I'm ashamed to say that we booted-out the Barn Owls from our sechoir (not on purpose), and they've gone for good. Whilst having supper last night our cat walked past with a big fat mouse in his mouth, then proceeded to play with it in front of us. Such is life.

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