17 Smart Ways: how to attract owls to your yard

Do you have a rodent issue in your garden? The best way to get rid of rodents is to attract owls. Read here to learn how to attract owls to your yard.

Rodents, squirrels, rabbits, and other pests can be every gardener’s nightmare. These creatures can severely damage your garden and steal chunks of your harvest. This is where owls come in to save the day. These creatures are terrified of owls.

Therefore, attracting owls to your garden may be your best hope of eliminating these animals. Wondering how to attract owls to your garden? Read on!

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15 Easy Ways To Attract Owls to Your Yard

Follow the tips below to attract owls to your garden space:

1. Incorporate Nesting Boxes into Your Garden’s Layout

Owls are the creatures of the night, and they enjoy hiding in cavities of trees which is also a popular nesting location.

So what better way to attract them than to provide ample nesting opportunities?

How to attract owls to the nesting box?

You can either build wooden nesting boxes for them or purchase pre-made ones from the local store. Install these nesting boxes in an elevated location (10-20 feet above ground), preferably on the trees in your garden.

When purchasing nesting boxes, consider the type of specie of owl you wish to attract. Owl species can vary in size.

Hence, it’s important to research the owl species that reside around you. You want to purchase the nest boxes accordingly to ensure they are not too small or too big for the owls.

The diameter of the entry hole should be roughly 2 inches, the depth should be approximately 23 inches, and the roof height should be at least 12 inches. These measurements will work for most species of owls.

2. Choose The Positioning of the Nest Box Wisely

Owls can be picky in regard to real estate. These nocturnal animals are highly smart creatures, and they prioritize safety when looking for a home.

Therefore, you must choose the location of the nest box wisely to ensure they meet owl standards.

Some features you want to look for when choosing a nest box location for owls include:

  • Sheltered spot
  • South-facing 
  • Stable (if the nest box moves even slightly while the owls inspect it, the animals may flee)
  • At least 10 feet off ground
  • Clear flight path

If you place your nesting box in an area with all these features, it will likely get approval from the owls in your neighborhood. 

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3. Offer A Perching Spot

Apart from a nesting spot, you must provide owls with adequate perching space. When owls are not inside a nesting box, they usually look for a safe resting location.

Since owls are night creatures and rest during the day, they look for safe spots to hide in during the daytime. Natural perches like snags or old tree branches make the ideal safe resting spot for owls.

You can also stack old branches on your trees if the trees in your garden lack perch spots. Remember, you want to create a space miming an owl’s natural habitat.

A backyard with minimal maintenance and pruning is ideal for an owl to get comfortable in.

4. Turn Off the Lights at Night

Most homeowners keep their gardens well-lit at night. However, this may not be the best idea if you are looking to attract owls.

Owls prefer to live in the dark since they are nocturnal creatures. Therefore, owls feel the safest in darkness.

Being in the dark also offers them an edge over prey and helps them to utilize their hearing and eyes more efficiently — their ears and eyes are naturally designed to adapt to darkness.

Hence, you must cut off all light sources during nighttime to attract owls to your garden.

5. Offer Them Food

Providing feeding opportunities is the best way to attract owls to your garden.

When attracting birds to your garden, adding a bird feeder to your trees may do the job. However, this may not help you catch the attention of owls.

Birds of prey is another term used to refer to owls. They are predatory birds that prefer devouring freshly killed prey.

Most owl species feed on tiny animals such as rodents or insects. Hence, attracting owls may not be an issue if you have a pest or rodent problem.

Furthermore, gardeners dealing with rodents or insects may benefit greatly from attracting owls.

6. Avoid Over-Cleaning Your Garden

As discussed above, highly maintained gardens may not make it to the list of the ideal place to live for owls.

These creatures prefer a natural habitat. So you want to mimic that in your garden space.

To do so, avoid cleaning your garden too much and let the leaf litter and brush piles take over. Doing so will help you catch the attention of owls in more than one way.

Firstly, your garden’s natural habitat-like feel will attract these beautiful creatures. Secondly, the leaf litter and brush piles will attract other small animals, like insects and rodents, to your garden area.

Many small mice and insects prefer living under the leaves in gardens. These animals use the brush piles and leave them as shelter and a place to warm up when the weather gets cold.

When owls notice the pray while hovering over your garden, it automatically draws more and more of them to the area.

What are 5 facts fun about an owl?

Owls have 270-degree neck rotation. This compensates for their fixated sight.

Owls are quiet hunters. They can hunt silently because to their feather pattern.

Sizes: Owls range in size from the 5-inch elf owl to the 32-inch great grey owl.

Effective Pest Control: A barn owl may eat 1,000 mice a year. Owls are natural pest fighters.

Owls have great night vision. Their huge, tube-shaped eyes can see in dim light.

7. Say No to Insecticides, Herbicides, And Pesticides

When aiming to attract owls to your garden, it is important to avoid using anything ending with ‘cide.’ Products ending with ‘cide,’ such as pesticides, insecticides, or herbicides, cause the mass destruction of organisms that attract owls.

For example, pesticides will kill chipmunks, rodents, moles, voles, and many other animals that owls prey on.

Moreover, insecticides kill invertebrates like bugs that serve as a food source for some species of owls and other animals like rodents.

Lastly, herbicides are aimed at killing weed growth. However, the issue with them is that not all animals prefer eating grass, and some animals, mostly mammals, will be more interested in consuming weed.

Therefore, using all these products will eliminate entire groups of living organisms that may disrupt your garden’s ecosystem and keep owls away.

Even if you follow the other steps discussed above, when owls don’t notice any prey in your garden, they will likely look for better areas to live in. 

8. Invest in A Birdbath

Bird baths are the key to attracting birds during the summertime.

Although owls do not consume large amounts of water, they will require hydration and someplace to cool down during the hot summer days.

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Installing bird baths in your garden is a great way to attract these creatures.

When choosing a bird bath to attract owls, it is recommended that you go for a larger bird bath. Smaller bird baths may not be able to accommodate owls.

Additionally, you want to ensure the bird bath is large enough for owls to bathe in and is located in a more private spot. The basins must be at least 2 inches deep and constructed of sturdy materials.

9. Keep Your Pets Indoors

Although this is not a tip for attracting owls to your garden, we could not help but share it. There have been incidents where owls have gotten their claws on smaller pets.

Owls are wild creatures and can be highly aggressive when catching prey or protecting themselves.

Pets like cats and dogs can make owls feel threatened, leading to attacks. Cats and small breeds of dogs like Yorkies and Chihuahuas are more susceptible to owl attacks.

So when actively trying to attract owls to your garden, you must take precautionary measures to protect your beloved pets from owl attacks.

This involves keeping an eye on your pets during the daytime and keeping them indoors during the night.

10. Keep Tall Trees

Nesting sites in lofty trees provide owls with both concealment and a broad perspective of their surroundings, which is why they make this choice.

Keeping some older trees in your yard might make it more inviting to owls and other wildlife.

11. Encourage the Use of Natural Landscaping Features

Providing owls with suitable hunting grounds requires the preservation of natural vegetation, which should include thickets and shrubs.

12. Keep a Quiet Environment

Because owls are nocturnal and appreciate peace and quiet, you should make an effort to keep the house as quiet as possible throughout the night.

13. Do Not Cut Down Trees That Are Hollow

Owls find the natural holes that occur in trees to be excellent places to nest.

14. Encourage the Development of a Diverse Ecosystem

Your garden will likely attract more owls if it is home to a variety of other animals, particularly smaller birds, and mammals.

15. Be Patient

It may take some time to successfully attract owls. Maintain a steady pace and have patience with your work.

16. Inform Your Peers and Neighbours

In order to increase the number of owls in the area, you can encourage your neighbors to develop habitats that are hospitable to owls as well.

17. Do Not Remove the Mulch From the Ground

Leaving behind a layer of leaf litter and logs that have fallen produces a habitat for insects and small animals, both of which are prey for owls.

Benefits of keeping owls on your property

Benefits of keeping owls on your property

There are Numerous Advantages to Having Owls Visit Your Garden.

1. Natural Pest Control

One of the primary advantages of attracting owls to your garden is the function that they play as a natural predator of pests.

Owls, such as the barn owl, are skilled hunters of rodents, and a single owl may ingest more than a thousand rodents in a single year.

Examples of rodents include mice and voles. This helps to keep pests out of your garden, which would otherwise do damage to your plants if they were there.

2. Fosters a More Diverse Species Pool

Your garden’s biodiversity will increase as a result of the addition of owls.

The existence of owls is a good indicator of a healthy ecosystem, which in turn suggests that the environment is well-balanced.

This may entice various forms of animals and ultimately result in an ecosystem that is more robust and self-sufficient in a garden.

3. Possibility of Receiving an Education

The presence of owls in your garden presents a wonderful educational opportunity for you and your family.

Observing these birds, learning more about the behaviors they engage in, and gaining a deeper appreciation for the natural world may all be accomplished right in one’s own backyard.

How to attract owls and hawks together

Creating an owl and hawk habitat attracts them together. That’s how:

  1. Provide Food: Owls and hawks are predators, therefore they require plenty of food. By attracting rodents, owls’ main food source, to your yard. Hawks eat rodents, birds, and insects.
  2. Install Nesting Boxes: Birds may breed safely and comfortably in nesting boxes. The species you’re attracting will determine the box’s size and placement.
  3. Maintain Natural Landscaping: Owls and hawks may nest, perch, and hunt in natural vegetation and big trees.
  4. Provide Water: A bird bath or modest pond might help attract these birds.
  5. Reduce Human Activity: Owls and hawks avoid human activity. During the breeding season, minimize disruptions.
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how to attract owls to your yard FAQs

1. Is It Good To Have Owls In Your Garden?

Owls play a major role in the ecosystem and can benefit your garden in several ways.

They help manage the pests and rodents that may be causing damage to your crop or plants.

2. When Is The Best Time To Look For Owls In My Garden?

Since owls are creatures of the night, nighttime is the best time of the day when owl sightings are more common.

If you have made an effort to make an owl-friendly garden, you may witness an owl sighting in your garden at night.

3. What Does An Owl Sound Like?

The owl makes a melodic call that sounds like a hooting noise. The sound of owls is quite close to the term “hoot.”

4. What Is The Best Color For An Owl Nest Box?

Bright colors can shoo owls away since they may appear increasingly bright during nighttime.

In contrast, darker colors may heat the nesting box during the summer. Experts recommend painting owl box bodies a light green color and the sun shade a light grey color.

5. Do Owl calls to attract owls in your garden?

Recorded owl cries can attract owls. Owls are territorial and may examine another owl’s cry. However, excessive or inappropriate use of this strategy might stress owls.

6. Owl in your yard meaning?

Owls have many cultural implications. Owls often signify wisdom and discernment. An owl in your yard indicates that it has enough food (rodents and insects) and nesting sites.

7. What do owls like the most?

Owls enjoy natural areas. This contains towering trees for nesting and roosting, a peaceful atmosphere, plenty of hunting grounds, and food like mice, voles, and insects.

Researching local owl species might help you understand their preferences.

8. How do you feed an owl?

Don’t feed owls. They hunt to keep fit and sharp. Owls become dependent when fed. However, a wildlife specialist may recommend feeding rescued owl mice or rats.

9. Is an owl a good pet?

Owls make bad pets. In a household context, their wild wants and behaviors might be difficult to accommodate.

Owls as pets require permission in many countries. Appreciating and preserving these lovely species in their native habitats is best.

10. Is it risky to lure owls to areas where people live?

In most cases, the answer is yes. Owls are normally timid around people and are not likely to cause any kind of danger to anyone.

Nevertheless, it is essential to give them their space and refrain from handling them unless it is absolutely required.

11. Which species of owls am I most likely to see in my backyard?

Your geographic location will determine the kind of owls to whom you are likely to be attractive.

Barn owls, screech owls, and great horned owls are examples of backyard owls that are frequently spotted.

12. Approximately how much time does it take to entice owls?

It might take anything from a few weeks to a few years before owls begin to visit your garden.

Owls are creatures of routine, so it is possible that it may take them some time to investigate and become accustomed to their new environment.

13. Is it acceptable to give owls food?

It is not a good idea to feed owls, despite the fact that doing so could seem enticing.

They have highly developed hunting instincts, and providing them with food might cause them to lose those instincts and render them reliant.

14. Are owls dangerous to domestic pets or other small animals?

Even though it doesn’t happen very often, huge owl species have the potential to be dangerous to smaller pets.

During the night, when owls are most active, it is best to keep any small pets that you have indoors.

Final Verdict

Attracting owls can benefit every homeowner and keep their gardens free from pests and rodents.

Those asking ‘how to attract owls to your property’ can follow the tips discussed above to attract these stunning night creatures to their outdoors.