Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

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By an Edhat reader:

Years ago a birdhouse, supposedly for owls, was installed in my yard. It has never attracted an owl, though occasionally the neighborhood hears them at night.

Do any Edhat readers have information that could help with this empty nest/birdhouse?

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Flicka Oct 20, 2018 08:49 AM
Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

Congratulations for hanging your laundry. Recommended for saving energy and there is nothing like the fresh smell of the clothes and sheets. In an article about (very expensive) B & Bs in Big Sur one listed with their amenities, "line dried sheets".

RHS Oct 19, 2018 10:54 AM
Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

Another owl house failure: Put one up a decade back. A couple of years later it was filled with bees and honeycomb which I discovered when the wind knocked it down from the branch. I eventually cleaned it out and repaired it and put it in a better location (north facing, higher from ground, at edge of oak tree space) but it has never been occupied by a bird to my knowledge. We do occasionally hear night time 'owl' sounds but not sure there are owls here at all.

a-1542210338 Oct 18, 2018 11:45 PM
Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

We hang our laundry and have done so for decades. I like to use washing machine at night (Edison suggests using machines at "off" hours). Then, I can hang my laundry in the darkness and listen for the owls. If the starlight and night sky are just right, sometimes when you hear a Barn owl screech you can look up and see its silhouette as it flies overhead. Never gets old for me.

a-1542210338 Oct 18, 2018 09:13 PM
Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

Re: light pollution- I just saw for the 2nd night in a row, a big barn owl flying around and perching in the bushes/trees near a street lamp on Cathedral Oaks. Not sure if it was hunting or what, it was around dusk both times we saw it in the area. I'm going back tomorrow evening to see of I get another glimpse of the beautiful bird! Such an amazing creature to see taking flight and swopping down into the field!

a-1542210338 Oct 18, 2018 02:28 PM
Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

Free of light pollution? Well. That makes sense. My neighbor has put up lights like she thinks we should all be having tennis matches at midnight. No kidding. Her place is lit up with light blasting up into the sky and washing over into her neighbors' yards. It's horrible. But what can you do? And now the City of Santa Barbara is replacing those lovely soft amber street lights with glaring white "stadium-like" bright lights. Who needs to see the stars at night? Who cares if owls and other birds have peaceful darkness when they need it?

a-1542210338 Oct 19, 2018 07:10 AM
Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

In the news today:....................BEIJING: China is planning to launch its own "artificial moon" by 2020 to replace street lamps and lower electricity costs in urban areas, state media reported Friday (Oct 19). Chengdu, a city in southwestern Sichuan province, is developing "illumination satellites" which will shine in tandem with the real moon, but are eight times brighter, according to China Daily.

a-1542210338 Oct 18, 2018 06:00 PM
Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

You must live in a safe neighborhood. We do not go out in our neighborhood after dark because too many of us have been jumped or robbed. Not all crime is reported for obvious reasons...or at least obvious to me. I would very much welcome bright lights in my "hood."

CoastWatch Oct 18, 2018 12:42 PM
Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

I live next to a canyon and built / placed an owl box in a nearby tree... It's been 6 months and no resident, even though we hear them all the time. From what I understand, the only chance of occupancy is during their mating season, when they are establishing a dwelling, otherwise they are already dialed in somewhere... Also, it has to be free of light pollution (porch lights, street lamps, etc).

a-1542210338 Oct 18, 2018 10:36 AM
Best Way To Attract Winged Residents To An Empty Owl/Bird House?

Same here with the house put high up in my backyard CA Pepper tree and no takers, going on five years now. If you do some research re: Barn owls (I am assuming that's the owl we're discussing here), Barn owls love a wide open field in which to hunt. I think you and I may be in the wrong place for our houses to be deemed "attractive" to an owl.--------I do have a "cute" story to share: When my house first went up, I contacted Ojai Raptor and asked if that organization (I donate every year, by the way) would like to give me an owl they had raised or rehabbed. I thought I was helping to provide housing for some "shelter challenged" owl. Hahahahaha. Yeah, right. Ojai Raptor told me, "Sure. $350.00. We need to pay for care and food for these animals." When I replied, "There are Barn owls in my area already. I can hear them overhead many nights. What if they become territorial and chase away my newly implanted owl?" O. R. told me, "Yes, that could very well happen." To this day, every time I think about this tale, I picture my $350 with long wings, gracefully flapping away from my Barn owl house, never to be seen again.

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