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How to Attract a Barred Owl to an Owl House

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Owls keep the rodent population down, which is especially helpful for farmers and property owners with lots of land. The barred owl is the most common owl in New Hampshire and is prominent throughout the eastern and northwestern parts of the United States. These owls are without feather tufts on their heads like other owls, and are gray and brown in color. They prefer an open area where they can have at least several hundred acres of land available for hunting, breeding and nesting. There are a few different things you can do to attract these types of owls.

Choose the location to place the owl house. Barred owls rarely nest in the mountaintops, they prefer the foothills. The area should be dense with trees, but the tree that holds the owl house should be open to allow for easy flying access.

  • Owls keep the rodent population down, which is especially helpful for farmers and property owners with lots of land.
  • The area should be dense with trees, but the tree that holds the owl house should be open to allow for easy flying access.

Find a water source. Barred owls like to nest near water. Any water source will do -- a lake, creek, pond, stream or water hole. Place the owl house within 30 and 200 feet of the water. Make sure the owl house is not close enough for owl droppings to fall into and contaminate the water source, or for small owlets to fall into the water source and drown.

Place the owl house at least 100 feet away from your house or another dwelling and away from the road. Barred owls fly low in the path of cars.

  • Barred owls like to nest near water.
  • Place the owl house at least 100 feet away from your house or another dwelling and away from the road.

Pick a tree that is more than 1 foot in diameter to hang the owl house, and hang the owl house on the part of the tree facing north or that is not directly facing the sun. The house also should be at least 15 feet off the ground.

Scatter untreated wood chips on the floor of the owl box.

Speak to the barred owls. Barred owls make distinctive calls. If you emulate their call at night, they often will respond and fly in to take a look. You also can play a barred owl tape or CD.

  • Pick a tree that is more than 1 foot in diameter to hang the owl house, and hang the owl house on the part of the tree facing north or that is not directly facing the sun.
  • If you emulate their call at night, they often will respond and fly in to take a look.

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