Close up Barred Owl taken by Gregory “Slobirdr” Smith Via Flickr

Order: Strigiformes
Family: Strigidae
Genus: Strix
Species: Strix varia


Barred Owls are medium to large sized birds, they can range anywhere from 16 to 37 oz and be as long as 20 inches (All About Birds, 2017). Barred Owls are medium sized owls meaning that they are smaller than owls such as Great Horned Owls but smaller than owls like the Barn Owl or Screech Owls (All About Birds, 2017).

Barred Owls are easily Identified by their prominent vertical striping on their chests and belly along with light striping through the rest of their bodies (James and Mazur, 2000). The juveniles look very similar although the striping is less noticeable(James and Mazur, 2000).

Barred Owl in the Snow. Photo captured by James Mann and shared via Flickr.

Barred Owls are commonly confused with a native owl, the Spotted Owl, because their plumage looks remarkably similar (National Audubon Society, 2016). The most obvious difference between the two species is that, as the name suggests, Spotted Owls are spotted whereas Barred Owls are streaked (James and Mazur, 2000).

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