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Owl Picture:
Pictures from Ontario

A page with an owl picture or, to be precise, pictures, from around the Province of Ontario, Canada.




In keeping with my other wildlife picture pages, this one is dedicated to photos and not words. 

Ontario has a number of owl species. I have photos of only the most common ones here.

Two other relatively common owls you may see in Ontario are the Great Gray Owl and the Snowy Owl. The snowy owl is found up in the tundra in summer and along the shores of lakes Erie and Ontario in summer.  


Owl Picture -- Great Horned Owl

Owl Picture, great horned owl to be exact

Owls are generally winter visitors to southern Ontario, Canada, preferring the great northern forests during the warmer months where they hunt small animals and other birds during the long twilight evenings and short summer nights.

This great horned owl clearly feels I shouldn't be disturbing its rest. Their golden eyes have a fierce, piercing quality that always makes me pleased I'm not owl-sized. They always look angry, never friendly.

If you've read the Gormenghast trilogy, this is probably the owl the author had in mind when he wrote about the owls eating Titus's forebear or forebears (I can't now remember which). 

Sawhet Owl

Owl Picture, saw whet owl, in this case

This saw whet owl is more my size. They're tiny and look cute, unlike the great horned owl above.

As we wandered out one evening, a man with binoculars whispered conspiratorially, 'there's a Saw-whet in the cedar tree down there.'

We had no idea what he was talking about and were tempted to answer 'the weather in Moscow is very good at this time of the year' but we didn't. And, it turned out he was right, here's the Saw-whet -- but no longer in a cedar tree. 

Saw whet owls are hard to find as they're small and like to sit in dense thickets or evergreens (like the cedar). 

Barred Owl

Owl Picture, barred owl this time

The barred owl just looks sleepy, maybe because its dark eyes never seem open. They're probably the most common owl in Ontario, certainly in the south where you can see them most of the year round as the night draws in. 

Like all owls, they eat meat. Particularly, mice and other small creatures like voles or moles. The surest way you'll know if an owl is in your neighbourhood is when you see furry balls of droppings on the ground. Owls eat the whole animal and excrete the inedible bits, like bones and fur.




Barn Owl

Owl Picture, barn owl in flight

Barn owls are a dwindling species in Ontario but they're still one of the most striking birds around. Their pale colouring and white face makes them instantly recognizable. I have this picture on our Raptors page too but it's worth repeating.


If you've enjoyed these pictures, you may also enjoy our pictures of other Ontario birds herehere, and on our page Ontario Raptors

And if you'd like to learn more about owls in general, try this site.

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Ontario Pictures