The Owl Pages

American Barn Owl ~ Tyto furcata


The American Barn Owl is a medium sized owl with no ear-tufts and a heart-shaped face. It was formerly considered a subspecies of the Common, or Western Barn Owl Tyto alba.

Photo Gallery (5 pictures)

  • American Barn Owl
  • American Barn Owl
  • American Barn Owl
  • American Barn Owl
  • American Barn Owl

Sound Gallery

Typical Call - Prescott, Arizona, USA. © Doug Von Gausig.
Pair calling - Peck's Lake, New York, USA. August. © Doug Von Gausig.
Twittering - Elkhorn Slough, Central California, USA. © Doug Von Gausig.


Size: Length 34-38cm. Wing length 290-358mm. Tail length 113-152mm. Weight 387-660g. Females often larger and heavier than males.

Habits: Generally nocturnal, although it is not uncommon to see this species emerge at dusk or be active at dawn, occasionally being seen in flight during full daylight. Flight is noiseless, with relatively slow wingbeats.

Voice: A drawn-out rasping screech similar to other Barn Owls.

Distribution: North America south to South America. They were introduced to Hawaii in 1958.

Range of American Barn Owl (Tyto furcata)
Range of the American Barn Owl Tyto furcata

Status: Generally common and widespread.

Original Description: Temminck, C.J. 1827. In Temminck & Laugier de Chartrouse, Nouveau recueil de planches coloriées d'oiseaux, livr. 73, pl. 432, and text.

International Ornithological Congress. 2020. "IOC World Bird List - Owls".
König, Claus & Weick, Friedhelm. 2008. "Owls: A Guide to the Owls of the World (Second Edition)". Yale University Press.
Tyto furcata at Xeno-canto.

See also: Other owls from North America, Central America, South America, Genus: Tyto.

Page by Deane Lewis. Last updated 2020-11-27.