Baby Owls! Everything You Need to Know About The Baby Owl

With their fluffy fur and piercing big eyes, there’s no denying that baby owls are one of the most adorable baby animals in the world. They’re so cute that it’s pretty difficult to imagine them one day growing up and becoming an agile hunter, especially as they look so cuddly. 

If you’re already an owl fanatic, we’re sure you’ll already know that baby owl sightings can be few and far between. To stay safe, baby owls are usually purposefully hidden from plain view to avoid being hunted by larger predators, and theytheytheythey are generally camouflaged to blend into their surroundings. 

On top of that, given that owl typically tend to be naturally nocturnal too, it means that observing and studying owls throughout their various life stages can be a tricky task to carry out – but luckily, this is where we come in to lend a helping hand. 

If you’re interested in learning more about baby owls, you’ve clicked on the right article! Below, not only will we be sharing fun facts about baby owls with you, but you will also find interesting information that will help you gain a deeper understanding of them, their characteristics, and their unique behaviors.  

Not just that, but we’ve also made sure to include plenty of adorable pictures of baby owls along the way, too. So, without further ado, let’s jump in ,let’s jump in whenever you’re ready!  

Fun Fact #1: A Baby Owl Is Officially Known As An Owlet

Did you know that baby owls are officially referred to as Owlets? Typically, the term Owlet is only ever used to exclusively refer to an owl in its first year of life and has not yet developed into a mature owl.

While it can be relatively tricky to sometimes distinguish the age of one owl from another, Owlets are easy to pick out simply due to their appearance, which often consists of white downy fur that has not yet developed into its adult plumage. 

Besides an easily distinguishable appearance, Owlets can also typically be identified due to their behavior.

Owlets cannot care for themselves entirely, so they will typically stay as close to the nest as possible, especially during the early stages of their life when they often stay close to their parents, who will provide them with protection. 

Fun Fact #2: Owls Can Lay Varying Numbers Of Eggs

Unlike other breeds of birds that typically tend to lay the same amount of eggs when each breeding season rolls around, adult owls are unique and will lay eggs in accordancebyf food they have to eat.

So, with that being said, if there are any food food food food shortages for whatever reason, an owl might only lay 1 or 2 eggs.

However, if there is an afood is abundant plenty available for the female adult to eat, then it is likely that she will lay up to 14 eggs in one go. However, interestingly enough, barn owls will usually only ever lay up to 6 little white eggs.

The primary breeding season will often take place between March tgust, although the most common time of breeding takes place in the springtime.

The main reason for this is that baby owlets will be born while their parents can hunt an abundant amount of prey, which will help to raise the chances of the owlets’ survival.

Nevertheless, owls are brilliant animals and will often switch up their breeding schedule due to a variety of different reasons that might potentially impact the success of their owlet’s survival chances, including:

  • Food shortages
  • Adverse weather conditions
  • Lack of a suitable mate
  • Illness
  • Too many competing owls

Fun Fact #3: Owls Aren’t The Best At Nest-Building!

Although owls are skilled hunters and agile predators, you might be amused to hear that nest-building doesn’t seem to come naturally to them.

So much so it is scarce to see an owl making their own nest from scratch, especially in a pair during the breeding season. Instead, paired owls will usually seek a nest that has already been built by other animals so they don’t have to go to the trouble of making a nest themselves. 

More often than not, owls will usually seek out a nest that has been built by a variety of different bird breeds, including nests that have builtmagpies, crows, and a variety of different types of hawk birds have builtmagpies, crows, and a variety of different types of hawk birds have builtmagpies, crows, and a variety of different types of hawk birds have built.

In addition to showing a preference for taking abandoned nests built by other birds, owls also like to nest in areas that allow for a high vantage point, including along the edges of cliffs, in the rafters of barns, and even in silos.

It is also worth noting that it is widely considered that once a pair has partnered, the male counterpart will locate and select an appropriate territory for the team to mate and nest. The female companion will then have the responsibility of searching for a nest and choosing one for the team to raise their little Owlets.

More often than not, the pair will raise their Owlets in this chosen nest and area for around seven months, as Owlets are helpless when they are young and need to be protected and taken care of by their parents.

Plus, as Owlets grow and begin to explore by themselves, they will typically not fly far from their nest alone during the first few months of their life, so the parents will stay with their young until they are ready to leave the nest and go off into the wild without them.

Once this has been successfully carried out, the mating pair will usually separate in search of new partners, although not all owls will do this. Tawny Owls, for example, are known to mate for life and spend their lives together. 

Fun Fact #4: The Babies Have Fluffy White Downy Fur!

As we have already touched upon above, when baby owls are born, they are easily distinguishable thanks to the adorable, fluffy white downy fur that they are born with.

Besides looking sweet and cute, the fluffy white down that baby owls are born with is an evolutionary trait present among many species of bird and helps them survive during this vulnerable period of their life.

I was wondering why that is? Well, the fluffy white down that covers baby owls (or Owlets) as soon as they are born not only helps to keep them nice and warm, but it also helps them to remain camouflaged in their surroundings, which in turn helps to protect them from being hunted by hungry predators in the air and on the ground. Pretty clever, right? 

Nevertheless, after only a short period, the fuzzy fur that baby owls are born with is soon replaced with darker feathers,, which shows that they are growing and preparing to leave the nest and become a fledgling.

Plus, in addition to those fluffy white feathers, some baby Owlets are even occasionally born with some of their adult feathers already grown in, although mostwill exclusively have white downy feathers for the first few days of their life after they have hatched.

On average, all downy feathers will have been gone after baby owls have reached their juvenile stage, which is a period of life that typically begins around a month or two after being hatched. 

Fun Fact #5: Owlets Are Born Blind

Unlike other species of bird, when baby owls are born, they are born unable to use their sight. For this reason, they must be taken care of by their parents to ensure that they will survive.

Luckily, mating pairs will stay with their young for several months and will ensure that they are protected from predators and given all the food they need to grow during this vulnerable period.

After a short period, baby owls will develop their sight, clamber around the nest curiously, and interact with the mother who stays inside the nest.

During this early stage, the father will typically stay away from the nest and guard his territory to ensure that his young and partner are protected from predators.

All the while doing this, the male is also typically responsible for finding food and bringing it back to the nest, where the mother will then take over and feed the little Owlets. 

Fun Fact #6: Baby Owls Eat Meat 

If you ever thought you were a picky eater, prepare to meet your match – because baby owls prefer eating meat and will often refuse to eat anything else! 

Nevertheless, even though baby owls get all of their strength and nourishment from a diet of various types of meat, it is still vital to eat of beef, as large chunks of meat can be dangerous and difficult for little owls to safely eat without choking.

For this reason, it is common for the male parent to hunt for small mammals to give to its young, including small birds, barn mice, and shrews. However, in some instances where there might be food shortages, baby owls may occasionally be given slugs, reptiles, and even insects to eat while the male goes off searching for a tastier meal. 

If a baby owl has not been born in the wild but has instead been born in captivity, then its diet can sometimes be different from what it might be if it was to have been born in the wild.

Typically, baby owlets born in captivity will have a more versatile diet that can include, alongside all the food sources we have mentioned above, frogs, cockerels, small birds, and more.

Unlike other types of birds that will occasionally switch up their diet and eat plants and vegetation, owls will rarely do this unless they are desperate. 

Fun Fact #7: Owl Eggs Are White

Did you know that owls lay little eggs that are a bright white color? Well, now you do! Unlike other types of birds, which lay eggs that are often cream, brown, and sometimes even orange-hued, owls will exclusively lay eggs that are small in size and a bright, rich white.

After a pair has been formed during the breeding season and a nest has been selected, the female will proceed to lay her eggs in the nest, which will usually be filled with whatever was initially in the roost when she found it.

However, in some instances, the female counterpart will sometimes forage in surrounding areas to collect leaves, branches, and other items from blending into the environment and from creating a safe foundation for the eggs to be hatched on. 

On the other hand, for barn owls who will typically fill their nest with pellets, the eggs can sometimes become dirty over the incubation period, which is caused by the shots and can serve as a survival advantage, as the bright white of the eggshell is more complex for hungry predators to spot.

In addition, you might also be interested to learn that Owlets will often hatch from their eggs at different times, although it is common for all of the baby Owlets to hatch from their eggs in a period of two days. 

Related Questions

Are owls monogamous?

Owls are primarily monogamous and will often be paired for life.

Do male owls help with the eggs?

The male is generally away from the nest during the incubation and hatching periods guarding the territory. He does return to bring food for the female.

How old are owls when they start to reproduce?

Owls generally reach sexual maturity at one year old, although they may not mate until they are 2 or 3.