Owl family (Strigidae)
A large owl, wingspan is close to 4 feet. Round head, brownish gray head and back, barred chest and belly, dark eyes, no ear tufts.
Nests in a large cavity in a dead tree. May use the same nest site for many years. Eggs are white. Clutch size – 2 to 3 eggs. Young leave nest 4 to 5 weeks after hatching.
“Hoo hoo hoohoo,” sounds like “who cooks for you”.
The genus Strix is from the Latin for “screech owl,” which is an inappropriate name assigned by Linnaeus. The species varia is from the Latin for “variegated” for its plumage.
In the Nature Park:
We have seen a pair of Barred Owls several times during the day along the Rail Trail and in the deep woods. Other species of owls occur in the Nature Park, but the Barred Owl is the one that is most likely to be seen during the day in the park.