Own a Tawny Owl nest box?

A reminder to owners of Tawny Owl nest boxes to exercise caution when monitoring.

One of our supporters has a Tawny Owl box in his garden, and last week he contacted us with this

I had a new experience this week when being attacked by a Tawny Owl. I had, a few days before,
seen a fledged owl at the entrance to the box and realised that successful breeding had occurred.
On the occasion of the attack I was three or four metres away at 11:00am when I assumed a branch
had fallen on me until I saw a Tawny Owl disappearing at speed. Its talons led to me having eight
cuts on and close to an ear – although surface wounds there was much blood and considerable
bruising afterwards. It was the force of the hit that was surprising – it was like being hit by a cricket
ball! How can something so light be so powerful?

Our enquiries suggest that when it does happen, it is invariably when there are “branching” young
still in the vicinity of the nest box/site. Although it is a rare occurrence this report highlights the
importance taking extreme care around Tawny Owl nests.