Hawk vs Owl
YouTube: JannTonne

Great Horned Owl Battles Red-Tailed Hawk Over Nesting Rights

It's rare one gets to see a red tail hawk and a great horned owl in the same place at the same time. These are two distinctively different species of bird, and although they are both predators, one hunts during the day while the other is mostly nocturnal. However, it turns out the two species interact more than you might realize. In fact, a camera over a red-tail hawk nest captured one of these rare interactions. In the video, an owl has clearly decided to set up shop on this nest and the red tail just isn't having it. The red tail swoops in multiple times.

On the first attempt, the owl manages to shove the hawk out of the nest. Undaunted, the hawk keeps circling and eventually the owl falls out of the nest, allowing the hawk to finally claim it. It's a fascinating look at the often-unseen lives of two admired predatory birds.

We were curious as to why these two species might be fighting in the first place and decided to do a little research. It turns out, owls are not nest makers. However, their ranges frequently overlap those of the red-tailed hawk. It just so happens that the hawk's nest is just the right size for an owl to lay their eggs and raise their young. So, the owls sometimes try to take over old red-tailed nests and then the two species end up battling over the best sites.

In this instance, it appears the red-tailed hawk won this battle. It stands triumphantly over the nest after the fact and the owl is nowhere to be seen. That means the owl will need to try and find another nesting site. Owls tend to prefer enclosed nesting sites anyway, so it may have worked out better for the owl in the long run. Still, we're glad a camera was there to capture one of these confrontations on camera for the world to see.

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