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Updated: 08/08/2014 08:17:17PM

Who cooks for you?

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florida fauna • josh olive

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It’s an unusual question for a bird of prey to ask, but he wants to know all the same: “Who cooks for you? Who cooks for you all?”

That’s what the call of a barred owl sounds like, though the enunciation isn’t very clear (you can watch a video of one calling at http://bit.ly/eHPhR). Despite their inexplicable interrogations, barred owls are near the top of my favorite birds list. Unlike their larger cousins the great horned owls, which prefer to live away from human habitation, barred owls are often heard in suburban neighborhoods. In fact, because their main prey species (rodents and songbirds) do very well around people, barred owls may actually benefit from suburban sprawl.

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