The Barn Owls have returned this year but is the female interested? With a bitterly cold start to Spring and snow on the ground, it’s not been an easy start. You can read our news item about these owls, here.
The breeding cycle often starts in late winter and by early spring pairs are usually spending much of their time at their intended nest place. Most pairs engage in mutual preening and cheek rubbing as part of courtship and pair-bonding.
The female does progressively less and less hunting, as the male brings food to her. Her weight increases from around 350g to 425g when she comes into what’s called “breeding condition”. Copulation generally occurs each time food is presented. In almost every case the male is present at the nest site in the two weeks leading up to egg laying and until the clutch is complete. – Reference: The Barn Owl Trust www.barnowltrust.org.uk