What Texel island barn owls eat

This video from Britain is called Slow-Motion Barn Owl in Flight – Unexpected Wilderness – BBC.

On 2 January 2014, children, their parents and grandparents went to Ecomare museum on Texel island in the Netherlands. There, they helped biologists doing research on owl pellets.

Owl pellets show clues about what owls have eaten. The 2 January research was about pellets of a barn owl couple near Oosterend village.

Surprisingly, a child discovered frog bones in one pellet. Barn owls hunt in the dark, seeing the body heat of their prey with infrared light. Frogs, being cold-blooded, don’t show body heat; making it hard for owls to find them. The owl may have found the frog accidentally.

As for mammals: the barn owls had caught 172 greater white-toothed shrews, 43 root voles, 10 wood mice, 2 house mice, 6 brown rats, and one bank vole.

Fifteen bird bones were found. Owls don’t often eat birds. Maybe more bird bones than usually there, because of the cold 2013 spring?

Texel common frogs: here.

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27 thoughts on “What Texel island barn owls eat

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  16. Ring in resten uilenmaal

    Bericht uitgegeven door Ecomare op vrijdag 9 mei 2014

    Heel bijzonder! Tijdens het ‘braakballenpluizen’ bij Ecomare werd een ringetje gevonden van een vogel. Normaal vinden we kaakjes en botjes van muizen, woelmuizen en spitsmuizen. Ecomare-medewerker en uilenexpert Dick Schermer, die het pluizen begeleidt, was dan ook erg verbaasd. Er was in al die jaren nog nooit eerder een vogelringetje gevonden. Na het opsturen van de gegevens kreeg Dick te horen dat het ringetje van een graspieper was die in 2012 in het Zwanenwater was geringd….en nu dus was geëindigd als kerkuilenmaaltijd.


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