Barn Owl Facts for Kids

Have you ever seen a barn owl? Do you know what they look like? How about what they act like? Or where they live? It’s time to learn more about them! You can download a FREE packet at the bottom of the post. It includes ALL the barn owl facts for kids, owl paint by number, copy the owl, and an owl word search puzzle – all free!

The Appearance of Barn Owls

These beautiful creatures are fascinating and very unique! Barn owls have large eyes that are often yellow or orange to assist with night vision. Their feathers appear painted with large white spots and small brown spots. Don’t be fooled by their good looks, though.

Dangers of Barn Owls

Barn owls can be very violent and dangerous to small rodents. They hunt and kill their prey in complete darkness, so small animals can’t see them coming. Barn owls attack using their sharp talons and long claws and then they swallow their prey in one bite. Ew! That’s not all, though. There is so much more to learn about owls! In this blog post, we will list 15 barn owl facts for kids. These fun facts will teach you everything from how these owls hunt to what they sound like. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

Characteristics of Barn Owls

Barn owls are smaller animals. They are about the size of a cat but only weigh one pound on average. Look out, though. A barn owl’s wingspan can be taller than you! Barn owls have very long wings with an average wingspan of over four feet!

Female barn owls are typically larger than the male owls. The average female barn owl weighs about 1.3 pounds, while the average male barn owl weighs only about one pound.

Barn owls make a variety of calls, including hissing, screeching, and clicking noises. Have you ever heard a hissing owl? How about screeching? Or maybe you’ve heard hoots of other owls? Keep your listening ears on at night and listen for barn owls the next time the sun goes down.

Types of Owls

North American barn owls are the largest barn owl. They can weigh upwards of one and a half pounds, which is double that of the Galapagos Barn Owl. The Galapagos Barn Owl is currently the smallest barn owl of all 46 species of owls. It only weighs about three-quarters of a pound.

Other owl species include the short-eared owl (which can also be found on the Galapagos Island), the barred owl, church owl, delicate owl, eastern screech owl, demon owl, stone owl, dobby owl, rat owl, great horned owl, and barnyard owl. Wow, that’s a lot of owls! Did you know there were that many?

Eagle owls are another species of owls found in many habitats across the globe. They are mostly located in mountainous and rocky areas throughout Europe and Asia. Have you ever seen an eagle owl? Their ears stick up and their wings are often long and spotted.

Barn Owl Facts for Kids about Hunting

A barn owl who prefers to hunt at night is classified as a night owl. Most barn owls are night owls, who begin hunting about one hour after sunset. They hunt through the entire night until about one hour before the sun rises. Could you imagine hunting for food in the dark?

Luckily, night owls have excellent eyesight in the dark and can see prey that is as small as a mouse from over 100 feet away. Wow!

To catch their prey, barn owls use their powerful talons, sharp claws, and curved beaks. They also swoop down on their victims from above, surprising them. This is one of the reasons why you may hear a barn owl referred to as a “ghost owl.”

Barn owls also have very long legs. They use their strong leg muscles to help them grip on branches and carry prey.

Barn Owl Facts for Kids about Food

Barn owls eat small vertebrates, such as mice, rats, and voles. They eat their prey whole and can consume up to one-third of their body weight in food each day. Could you eat that much?

Barn Owls in the Wild

Barn owls live in North America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia. They are a very widespread bird species found in almost all parts of the world.

They can be found in a variety of habitats, including forests, marshes, grasslands, and even urban areas. Do you know of barn owl groups that live near you? Maybe you even have one in your backyard? You’ll never know unless you explore!

More Interesting Barn Owl Facts for Kids

Barn owls mate in late December to early January. This is known as the breeding season and is considered a nesting time for barn owls. Barn owls build nests in hollow tree branches, tree holes, cliff cavities, off the side of buildings, or in nest boxes. Have you ever seen a barn owl nest?

A barn owl remains silent in flight as a result of soft fringe-edged feathers that don’t “swoosh” as they move. This makes it easier for barn owls to attack their prey from above. This is another reason why barn owls are sometimes referred to as “ghost owls.” They can’t be heard coming. Where would you go and what would you do if no one could hear you walking?

Barn Owls as Endangered Species

Many species of barn owls have become endangered over recent decades, meaning they are at risk of becoming extinct. Could you imagine if we lost these beautiful creatures? Not only are they mesmerizing to look at, but they are an important part of the food chain. Without owls, we would have an overpopulation of rodents. Who wants more mice and rats? Not me!

What Can you Do?

Barn owls are now considered a protected species with many living in animal sanctuaries. This has allowed barn owls to reproduce and increase their population. Female barn owls lay eggs during nesting season. If you ever see eggs in a nest, make sure you leave them there. That’s one way you can protect species of barn owls. Make sure you spread that information too and share all these fun facts with your friends and family! I’m sure they will enjoy them just as much as you did!


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The freebie includes ALL the barn owl facts for kids, owl paint by number, copy the owl, and an owl word search puzzle!


Check 100 fun facts for kids here and browse all the other topics at the bottom of the post.