On our webpage, Mother Screech Owl with Fledgling, we talk about a pair of screech owls using our backyard nest box. Here is the rest of the story.
The first nest box we built was actually for red-bellied woodpeckers. The specifications on woodpecker nests are all smaller than needed for screech owlsspecs. I always thought the woodpeckers had thumbed their noses at it but Nancy insists that they had actually checked it out quite thoroughly. Apparently, the squirrels then found the nest box and gnawed the opening to make it more suitable for their own use.
When the hole size was right, the owls chased the squirrels off and began raising families.
After a couple of years, we thought that if they were going to continue, maybe we should build them a proper screech owl nest boxplans.
We placed the nest box on a similar twelve-foot 4″x4″ post a few yards away from the original, but the screech owls continued using the now-familiar original to raise their young. Interestingly, the woodpeckers found the new owl box and began using it.
After the fifth year, we suspect something must have happened to one of the screech owl parents and they never came back. We have started hearing them again in the evenings and so continue to have hope that they will someday return.