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Bird of the Week: Barred Owl

Like all owls, the Barred Owl is nocturnal, though it is more active during dawn and dusk than other species. This may have to do with it’s biggest rival, the Great Horned Owl. These two species share a majority of their range and inhabit the same variety of forests, making the Great Horned not only a big competitor for food and territory but also the Barred Owl’s greatest predator. Whether staying safe or simply hunting when there’s less predators out, their dawn/dusk active cycle allows the Barred Owl to be more easily seen by humans. If you take a walk through a deep, mature forest during these times, you may naturally hear their distinct and booming call of “Who cooks for you.” These owls are eager vocalists and often respond to this call whether its another owl, a recording, or a human impersonator. So, come out and explore your Metroparks, find some peak forest habitat, keep your eyes out for good nesting hollows or stags, and send out your own call to hopefully get a response from one of these beauties in the wild, whose call can be heard over half a mile away!

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