Attracting Owls to Your Garden

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Why not consider tempting Barn Owls (Tyto alba) and Spotted Eagle-Owls (Bubo africanus) to your garden? They might just be in your neighborhood and be looking for a place to breed.

Barn Owls hunt by flying over open, vegetated areas supporting rodents. People living on smallholdings, farms or near to open, undisturbed areas are likely to see Barn Owls on their properties.

Spotted Eagle-Owls are commonly found in wooded gardens and will nest on the ground, building ledges, trees or rocky cliffs. The eggs are laid mainly from June – November.

Owl boxes are generally designed to attract either a Spotted-Eagle Owl or a Barn Owl. Only the species already occurring in your area may be attracted by the box. The Barn Owl prefers a closed box with just a small opening entry, while the Spotted Eagle-Owl prefers a more open box, with a half stable door entrance.

Owl boxes are generally waterproof and should last several years under normal South African weather conditions. It is however, a good idea to clean the box out once a year, once the young have fledged.

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