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The Howard County Barn Owl's nest was depredated by something, probably raccoons, last Sunday or Monday.  Two large young were found on the floor of the barn, but seven are missing.  Probably all were taken but there is a chance the largest of the young was able to fly off with the adults.  This is not an unusual happening in areas with high raccoon and other middle sized predators. Probably half the nesting attempts are not successful. They will likely renest somewhere in the area.

Checking old barns for barn owls, with landowner permission,  is a good days fun.  Probably every county in the state has at least one pair. Maybe a few Ozark core area counties are barn owl free.  I have received reports from Callaway, Boone, Howard, Cooper and Moniteau, and across Little Dixie to Ralls Co. over the last five years.  The Bootheel and the Osage Plains have the most. Most landowners don't want people to know or have visitors.  It never hurts just drive around and ask a landowner if they have seen any anywhere recently. Have a picture handy to show them as many folks don't remember them from when they were more common.  Good luck.

Brad Jacobs
Missouri Department of Conservation
P.O.Box 180
Jefferson City , MO 65102
573-751-4115 ext 3648


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