Timber owls... a danger in daylight?!?

mmaddie's mom

9 Years
Jun 2, 2010
Elmwood, Illinois, USA
For the last 2 nights we have heard owls in our front and back yard (we have an acre). My husband went out several times and shot up in the trees trying to scare them away. They keep coming back. They were here at dawn this morning and we got to actually see them... 3 large timber owls!

I free range during the day usually from about 7am-5pm. Here is my question... At what time of day are these owls a risk? If I shorten the free range time to 9am-4pm, will they be out and hunting during those daylight hours?

I have bantams and have babies right now. In the pen, they are secure during the evening and night.
I was just reshearching on google and what not, trying to find an answer to your question.

This is the only thing I could get out of all of it...

-Owl's normally hunt away from their daytime resting place
-Most active early morning, night, and twilight

I personally wouldn't take the chance, even though they don't hunt during the day, I doubt that if a chicken is right in front of them they would spare it's life. It's just too easy.
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I'm pretty sure that there daytime resting place is about a 1/4 mile across field at the creek, lots of timber down there. And I'm thinking that they have been up here in the evening, night and early morning to hunt my chickens. Haven't lost any recently.

Definately shortened free range time and maybe none at all for a few days.

I never think to Google something... my daughter has to remind me all the time to use this resource.
First you'd better come up with a description since there is no such thing as a "timber" owl--the closest thing is the spotted owl which isn't found in IL. Generally owls won't hunt in the daylight unless they are really hungry since they will be mobbed by crows so you chickens are probably ok during the day. However, if your owls are great horned--which I doubt since you said there were three--they may take a bird at either end of the day before they are locked up. On the other hand a small owl, say a screech owl, probably wouldn't be a danger to anything other than the chicks--even a bantam would be too big. Bottom line would need a better name on the bird. Also, given the number, what you see may be a migration and in a few days they may be gone.
Timber owl? Is that another name for a barred owl? I would take them seriously as a predator. They are very opportunistic hunters and will hunt before evening has fallen.
You're right but the similar looking barred owl is found in Illinois year round. I would almost bet that is what she is referring to. Mmaddie's Mom, a great owl resource is www.owlpages.com You will find lots of great information on owls there including recordings of their vocalizations.
I had this beautiful creature (which I believe to be a Barred owl) come by a few years in a row. It seems like it was always in the winter. Sometimes he/she would show up around 2pm and leave around 5pm. They're was one year, he sat on my bird pole (feeders) everyday. We have many pics of it in the tree at night also. Even the dog could not scare it away. It was always staring at the ground. I believe the mice would dig holes in order to get to the bird seed.



I wonder if this will come back this year now that I have chickens..
Forgive an old farm boy (my husband) for using a name that he has used all his life, "Timber Owl".

Because it was still pretty dark, all we could see well was the size... by size and what is common here in Illinois, I am guessing Barred owls.

Thanks Ang... will look up owlpages.com .
I've been hearing one around the farm but have not seen him. I always supervise my chicks while free ranging. Keep your eye on the sky is my theory.

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