Beckenham adult webcams
There is a considerable variation between the sizes and colour of the approximately 28 subspecies but most are between 33 and 39 cm (13 and 15 in) in length with wingspans ranging from 80 to 95 cm (31 to 37 in).The plumage on head and back is a mottled shade of grey or brown, the underparts vary from white to brown and are sometimes speckled with dark markings.
The bird is known by many common names which refer to its appearance, call, habitat, or its eerie, silent flight: white owl, silver owl, demon owl, ghost owl, death owl, night owl, rat owl, church owl, cave owl, stone owl, monkey-faced owl, hissing owl, hobgoblin or hobby owl, dobby owl, white-breasted owl, golden owl, scritch owl, screech owl, straw owl, barnyard owl, and delicate owl. Based on DNA evidence, König, Weick & Becking (2009) recognised the American Barn Owl (T. Intergrades with guttata from the Balkans through Hungary and along the Rhine and lower Meuse rivers, and with affinis around the Egypt-Sudan border.Some subspecies with restricted ranges are more threatened. delicatula should be split off as a separate species, to be known as the eastern barn owl, which would include the subspecies T. Island forms are mostly smaller than mainland ones, and those inhabiting forests have darker plumage and shorter wings than those occurring in open grasslands.The barn owl was one of several species of bird first described in 1769 by the Tyrolean physician and naturalist Giovanni Antonio Scopoli in his Anni Historico-Naturales. As more species of owl were described, the genus name Strix came to be used solely for the wood owls in the typical owl family Strigidae, and the barn owl became Tyto alba in the barn owl family Tytonidae. W Europe from the British Isles south to the Maghreb and west along Mediterranean coastal regions to NW Turkey in the north and the Nile in the south, where it reaches upstream to NE Sudan.The female does all the incubation, and she and the young chicks are reliant on the male for food. Many subspecies have been proposed over the years but several are generally considered to be intergrades between more distinct populations.When large numbers of small prey are readily available, barn owl populations can expand rapidly, and globally the bird is considered to be of least conservation concern. Twenty to thirty are usually recognised, varying mainly in body proportions, size and colour.The barn owl is found almost everywhere in the world except polar and desert regions, Asia north of the Himalayas, most of Indonesia, and some Pacific islands.
Phylogenetic evidence shows that there are at least three major lineages of barn owl, one in Europe, western Asia and Africa, one in southeast Asia and Australasia, and one in the Americas, and some highly divergent taxa on islands.
Other sounds produced include a purring chirrup denoting pleasure, and a "kee-yak", which resembles one of the vocalisations of the tawny owl.
When captured or cornered, the barn owl throws itself on its back and flails with sharp-taloned feet, making for an effective defence.
The heart-shaped face is usually bright white, but in some subspecies it is brown.
The underparts, including the tarsometatarsal (lower leg) feathers, vary from white to reddish buff among the subspecies, and are either mostly unpatterned or bear a varying number of tiny blackish-brown speckles.
Contrary to popular belief, the barn owl does not hoot (such calls are made by typical owls, like the tawny owl or other members of the genus Strix).