Why Would An Owl Be On The Ground?

It’s not often that people see owls on the ground as owls should generally be flying or resting on trees instead of the forest floor.

Question is – Why would an owl be on the ground?

There are a few reasons why an owl may be on the ground including hunting or its age.

Unfortunately, in some cases, owls may end up on the floor due to injuries or sicknesses as well.

In this article you’re going to discover

  • Why would an owl be on the ground? (Answered in detail)
  • What you should do if you see an owl on the ground

Short and simple article I think you’ll find interesting

Sound good?

Let’s get started!

Why Would An Owl Be On The Ground?

Seeing an owl resting on the ground is not a normal sight.

Most people associate owls with flight and trees, so it might be concerning to see an owl chilling on the floor.

However, it may not always be a reason for concern.

Although an owl may be on the floor due to an injury, there are plenty of other reasons why it is on the ground.

There are hundreds of species of owls in the wild and one of these is the burrowing owl.

These types of owls are often found running across the ground to find and hunt their prey.

Most owls will hover in the air and swoop down to eat, but burrowing owls will hunt close to the ground.

They can hear and see their prey more easily this way.

An owl found on the ground could also be a young owl that has just recently fledged.

It’s completely normal for these young birds to be found on the ground for the first couple of days after fledging as they are not used to flying yet.

Usually, there will be a parent owl keeping an eye out for their young and feeding them too, so don’t bother a young owl waddling about on the floor.

If you do move these owlets, there’s a high chance that the parent owl will not be able to find their young, which can be fatal for these fledglings.

Not all owls that you find on the floor are there purposefully.

Some owls on the floor may need assistance as they may be trapped or ill.

If an owl does not flee when you approach it, this is a cause for concern.

It may be that the owl is physically injured in some way, preventing it from escaping.

And it could also be the case that the owl is trapped in a fence or another contraption.

These scenarios are dangerous for the owl as they may become ruffled especially if a person approaches, and this struggle may hurt them further.

The best thing to do is to contact a veterinarian or another qualified wildlife professional to diffuse the situation.

Related article – Are owls raptors?

What To Do If You Find An Owl On The Ground?

First, assess the situation.

Not all owls on the ground are injured or sick, so if the owl appears to be hunting or is simply a young owl, leave it alone.

Another way to check is to see if the owl flies away when you approach it.

If it is unable to, it may need your assistance.

If you are not a professional, the best thing you can do for the owl is to contact the nearest wildlife rehabilitator.

They may ask you to stay with the bird while you wait for the professionals to arrive.

Keep away from the owl in order to prevent startling it, potentially injuring it further.

An obvious exception to this rule is if the bird is in danger or is very obviously injured needing immediate action.

If no help is available at the moment, you will need to take action yourself.

Your best bet is to capture the bird, put it in a box or pet carrier, and take it to a vet or wildlife center.

Make sure to wear gloves as these birds have long and sharp talons.

If no vet or wildlife center is open at the time you find the owl, take it home for the night, but don’t give any food or water to the owl and leave it alone until you take it to the center in the morning.

Before I wrap up here’s some interesting articles about Owls which I think you’ll enjoy reading about so do check them out!

Do eagles eat owls?

Are owls intelligent?

Are crows afraid of owls?

Do hawks eat owls?

Difference between hawk and owl

Wrapping Up

Owls are magnificent birds that should be left alone to their own devices.

It might be second nature to you to help a seemingly helpless owl on the floor, but this is not always the case.

Some owls are on the floor as they are hunting and others may be on the floor as they are young and not used to flying yet.

However, in some cases, owls may need some intervention.

But always make sure to do this as safely as possible and call a professional first!

We at birdcageshere.com write about bird health and diet however it should not be taken as medical advice. For advice on your bird you need to seek out an avian vet. The information you find on birdcageshere.com is for educational purposes only. At birdcageshere.com we are not liable for any information that you may find on here. Birdcageshere is NOT a substitute for professional medical advice about your bird.