Are Barred Owls Dangerous? (Interesting Facts)

Are barred owls dangerous to humans?
Are barred owls dangerous to humans?

Owls, or barred owls, have often been portrayed as smart and knowing birds and charming and cuddly picture book friends. On the other hand, they are also mentioned in wildlife culture as a terrifying predator. That has led to the question that many people wonder, “Are barred owls dangerous?”

In this article, let’s find out if barred owls can scare people and harm humans and other large animals.

Are barred owls dangerous?

Owls are very loyal to their families and territory, and will defend them at all costs. So, if you ask, “Are barred owls dangerous?” the short answer is “Probably!”. When any of their surrounders are threatened, even the smallest act, an instant response to protect their terrentials, will be activated and may cause injuries to humans or even fatal.

This is a rare way for a barred owl to hurt someone, but it does sometimes happen, especially at this time of year when the birds are getting prepared to raise their young. “When owls are nesting, they’re very territorial,” said a biologist at Willamette University.

If rising testosterone levels in male owls can trigger aggressive attitudes as they try to secure their place in the social structure of their woodland habitats.

barred owls and humans
barred owls and humans

Although owls have a reputation for terrifying humans when they see them in the wild, studies have shown that they are rather fearless.

They can full-on attack any perceived threat, regardless of the intruder’s size or strength, and with little to no warning.

To kill its victim, an owl will use its razor-sharp talons to slash through muscle and tissue and leave deep puncture wounds.

Likewise, humans are usually safe from owls. However, owl assaults can occasionally happen. Because of this, it is helpful to be prepared to deal with owl hostility.

Because owls are wild animals with unpredictable behavior, you should always be cautious near their breeding or hunting grounds.

About barrel owls

barrel owls
barrel owls

When protecting its area against larger birds, an owl will sometimes lose the fight, but more often than not, it will prevail.

There’s written evidence of interactions between owls and people, which is not positive. Multiple cases of barred owl attacks on hikers have been documented in the east and southeast of the United States.

The nature of owls is not to be friendly toward humans, and they are especially uneasy with being stroked, petted, or otherwise handled.

Read on if you want to know how to defend yourself against an angry owl.

Barred Owls Sound

Barred Owls sound

What should we do to protect ourselves?

Humans are usually safe from owls. However, owl assaults can happen on occasion. Because of this, it is helpful to be prepared to deal with owl hostility.

Protect yourself from the talons’ knife-like edges in whatever way you can, even if it’s merely by using your hands and arms.

Scientific evidence reveals that owls don’t have a healthy fear response. An owl will be startled by loud noises like clapping and yelling and may also be alarmed by sudden, bright lights.

An effective strategy when an owl assault is to produce as much sound as possible while flailing your arms and legs.

barred owls protection
barred owls image

As you may not have prior notice of an owl assault, and an angry owl may ‘dive bomb’ whatever it perceives as a threat to its nest or partner without making a sound, it may be impossible to prepare for one.

Thus, protecting your head should be your priority if you ever find yourself in a similar terrible circumstance.

An idea comes with keeping an owl as a pet, however, soon enough, they would realize that they can’t bond with their cute little owl as they thought they would.

In the United States, it is against the law to own a wild owl unless the situation is approved by the government, such as in a licensed rehabilitation center. Although owl ownership might be short-lived, it is lawful in the United Kingdom.

Interesting Facts about Barred Owl

couple of barred owls
couple of barred owls

The Barred Owl is one of the few fascinating species that choose to stay in our state throughout the harsh winter. Barred Owls and Great Horned Owls are nearly the same height (21 inches vs. 22 inches).

However, the average Barred Owl weighs just 1.6 pounds, making it about half as heavy as a Great Horned Owl.

  • Scientific name: ​​Strix varia
  • Weight: Around 1.6 pounds
  • Length: An average of 51cm (21 inches)
  • Wingspan: Range from 96 to 125 cm (38 to 49 in).

The size of their claws is proportional to the size of their prey, a feature that nature has thoughtfully endowed them with.


Barred owls prefer to hunt small mice for their main course; however, frogs and birds, or reptiles in general, can also be their favorite diet at night or in the evening.

Their diet consists primarily of rodents like mice and voles, so their talons are much thinner and less menacing than those of other huge raptors.


barred owls nesting
barred owls nesting

The Barred Owl’s nesting season begins in the late winter or early spring.

When choosing a nesting spot, they look for cavities created by a fallen limb, a lopped-off tree top, or a woodpecker-carved hole.

This is undoubtedly an exception to their habit, but if they cannot find a suitable nest hole, they may choose to reuse the nest of a squirrel, crow, or hawk.


The female Barred Owl lays a single clutch of two to three white eggs, which she will carefully incubate for 28 to 33 days with the help of her devoted male partner.

About six weeks after hatching, the young owls are ready to fledge, but their parents will continue to feed and care for them for a little longer. Unlike most other birds, cockatiels may take as long as four to six months to reach adulthood.

About Dang Thuong

American Birding Expo is the best American birding website. On my website, readers can fully access our articles about Birding, Birds by State and Types of Birds. Let's subscribe website to receive other interesting articles that only for you. Follow our Twitter

Leave a Comment