barn owl


barn owl

noun

: a common kind of owl that nests in barns and other buildings

Full Definition of BARN OWL

:  a widely distributed owl (Tyto alba) that has plumage mottled buff brown and gray above and chiefly white below, frequents barns and other buildings, and preys especially on rodents

First Known Use of BARN OWL

1674

barn owl

noun    (Concise Encyclopedia)

Common barn owl (Tyto alba).—Karl Maslowski/Photo Researchers

Any of several species of nocturnal birds of prey (genus Tyto), sometimes called monkey-faced owls because of their heart-shaped facial disk and absence of ear tufts. Barn owls are about 12–16 in. (30–40 cm) long, white to gray or yellowish to brownish orange. Their dark eyes are smaller than those of other owls. They hunt mainly small rodents, often on cultivated land, and nest in hollow trees, buildings, towers, and old hawk nests. The common barn owl is found worldwide except in Antarctica and Micronesia. Other species occur only in the Old World.

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