Species of the Week: The Barred Owl

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This week we’re taking a closer look at a member of the owl family that calls Murphys Point home, the Barred Owl! These, mostly nocturnal, predators are well known to campers because of their uniquely expressive hooting hoo hoo ho-ho, hoo hoo ho-hoooaaaw (“who cooks for you, who cooks for you all”). The Barred Owl’s name comes from the horizontal patterning across their upper breast and wings. Sexual dimorphism exists in this species- females can be up to one third larger than males. These birds are actually bigger than you might imagine with a wingspan of over a meter! Like other bird species, the Barred Owl regurgitates its undigested food into a mass of fur, feathers, and bones known as pellets- if you look closely, you may be able to find pellets like these at Murphys Point! This feathered friend was spotted near the Rideau Comfort Station in a cedar tree. 

 

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