What Do Screech Owls Eat In Winter And Summer To Survive? - What Do Eastern Screech Owls Eat


Updated: 24 Apr 2021

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It is a commonly asked question, What do screech owls eat? When we talk about screech owls' diet, they are birds of prey. They hunt different species to survive. Most owls hunt small species, although a few love to eat fish. Owls are birds that can be found nearly everywhere on the planet, except for Antarctica.

The screech owl is a nocturnal species of owl. It will sleep among the deep foliage of trees and bushes in the summer to avoid predators and mobs of birds. The activity of this nocturnal bird begins after dusk. The most dangerous time in the lives of these owls is when they are fledging. Because of the lack of experience, they are most vulnerable to predators because of injuries. Now we discuss what screech owl's diet is? 

What Do Screech Owls Eat?

When we talk about an owl's diet, the factors that affect its food include size, habitat, and environment. Small mice, reptiles, and insects commonly prey on owls that hunt in semi-open areas.

There are 21 different types of screech owls. They have strong claws and pointed curved nails that help them rip prey. There are about 216 species of owls in the world. Eighteen of these species belong to the baron owl group.

Captive screech owls have been observed to eat 100 to 200 grams of meat daily, depending on the season, size, and prey availability. It indicates that owls in captivity consume 33% of their body weight. Some owls eat between 25% and 30% of their body weight.

Sometimes, screech-owls eat cats. If you think your cat is about the size of an owl, owls won't try to eat your cat. So you are thinking wrong. They are excellent at eating small animals due to their exceptional hunting abilities and the benefit of flying.

What Do Screech Owls Eat In The Winter?

In the winter, they prefer to consume giant insects and tiny rodents. Their food involves:

  • Crickets
  • Beetles
  • Moths

In the list of giant insects, they prefer to eat:

  • Rodents
  • Shrews
  • Mice

Sometimes, they hunt bats to eat. Mostly, they like to eat in winter:

  • Small Birds
  • Earthworms
  • Crayfish
  • Spiders
  • Lizards
  • Frogs

What Do Screech Owls Eat In Summer?

The screech owl is a hunter of giant insects and small animals found in the western United States. Screech owls feed on the following species in summer.

  • Beetles
  • Centipedes
  • Gophers
  • Wolves
  • Scorpions
  • Insects

What Do Screech Owls Eat In The Wild?

Screech-Owls consume a wide variety of tiny creatures, including songbirds, rodents, reptiles, and a remarkable amount of invertebrates.

What Do Screech Owls Eat At Night?

Screech owls eat invertebrates, which are probably their most important prey. Worms, shrimp, and bugs are among their favorite foods. Rodents and songbirds are the preferred vertebrate meal of these owls. The diet of the eastern screech owl includes around 138 different types of invertebrates.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What Do Eastern Screech Owls Eat?

Eastern screech owls consume a variety of invertebrates and birds during the nesting season. These owls tend to consume birds over rodents in urban areas. Squirrels and rodents make up about 67% of their meal. Bats, moles, rodents, and shrews are examples of other mammals.

They consume 85% of songbirds in the wild. Snakes make up 62% of the diet of these owls when it comes to reptiles. They mainly eat birds like Doves, Creepers, Warblers, Jays, Swallows, Thrashers, Flycatchers, Mockingbirds, Thrushes, House sparrows, and Finches. The eastern screech owl eats nine types of snakes, including Garter and Earth snakes.

2. What Do Western Screech-Owls Eat?

Mostly, Western screech owls eat tiny rodents. The western screech owl eats birds, rodents, fish, amphibians, spiders, slugs, and snails. They eat far more arthropods than the eastern screech owl. In Seattle, crayfish and giant carpenter ants are generally the widespread prey items for these owls.

Western screech owls in Arizona prefer to consume only mammals. These include Desert pocket mouse, Kangaroo rat, Deer mice, and Southern grasshopper mouse.mIn British Columbia, some of these owls have been seen eating caterpillars, crickets, and even Northern Flicker.

These owls prefer house sparrows, but only when these birds are plentiful in their surroundings. Some western screech owls have been found eating Pacific tree frogs and mountain whitefish in addition to birds, which indicates that frogs and fish are among the owls' preferred prey.

Jerusalem crickets are the preferred food of these owls in the southwest United States and northern Mexico. They like to eat Violet-green Swallows, tidepool sculpins, and winter moth caterpillars on Vancouver Island.

3. What Do Florida Screech Owls Eat?

Florida's Screech owl's diet consists of the following species:

  • Shrews
  • Bats (sometimes)
  • Small Birds
  • Mice
  • Rodents
  • Lizards
  • Spiders
  • Frogs
  • Small Meaty Creatures

4. What Do Whiskered Screech-Owls Eat?

They prefer to consume a variety of creatures. Whiskered screech owls' prey consists of the following species:

  • Moths
  • Crickets
  • Caterpillars
  • Katydids
  • Scorpion
  • Arthropods

Frequently, they eat big and small rodents.

5. What Do Baby Screech Owls Eat?

Baby owls can eat everything, which comprises meat.

They prefer to eat the following food:

  • Reptiles
  • Insects
  • Worms
  • Birds
  • Mammals
  • Fish

6. What Birds Do Screech Owls Eat?

In the list of birds, they mostly eat small birds. Mostly, they hunt songbirds and sometimes hunt bats to satisfy their hunger.

They devour a wide variety of species, including:

  • Earthworms
  • Crayfish
  • Spiders
  • Insects
  • Frogs
  • Little Animals

Their hunting methods include finding a suitable place to sit and listening to or monitoring the movements of prey.


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