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Australian Masked Owls: Basic Facts and Information

Blog | September 27th, 2016

Australia is truly rich in wildlife, unfortunately, many of these animals’ natural environment is under pressure from industrialization, the encroachment of land development, and the spread of human civilization. Even more worrisome is that many people are not even aware of the many species of unique animals in the country, let alone be concerned with protecting them, and their natural habitats.

The Australian Masked Owls are just one of the species of animals that conservationists such as Black Snake Productions strive to protect, by educating people about these and other animals found in Australia. There are many interesting things to consider about this species of owl, as you will discover below.

Basic Facts and Information About the Australian Masked Owl

The Australian Masked Owl – Tyto novaehollandiae, is noticeably recognisable by its face, as it looks like a mask, as the name implies. The feathers are brown, black and white, with lighter colouring for the males, and darker, richer colours for the females. As one of the larger species of owls, the females are typically larger in size.


Australian Masked Owls are found in certain areas throughout the country, however, they avoid dry desert areas, and prefer moist climate than dry, and can even be found residing in swampy regions.

Territorial Behaviour

This is a very territorial animal that will reside in one area until it dies, and forced relocation is nearly impossible without harm. Which is one of the main concerns that conservationist have because this species of owl will actually starve in its own defined territory, rather than move to a new location in search for food.


If there is one thing people may know about this owl is that is was used many years ago to help reduce the mouse population on homesteads during the early 1800’s, earning the nickname Mouse Owl. Rodents are its main diet, but they also prey on insects, smaller birds, and reptiles.

There is much more to learn about the Australian Masked Owl, and many people of all ages are discovering for themselves, with hands on education by Black Snake Productions. If you are interested in Australian wildlife and you want to learn more, while supporting wildlife conservation, then contact us here at Black Snake Productions.

We offer wildlife presentations showcasing Australian birds, reptiles and animals that people can interact with. In this way, greater awareness for Australian wildlife and their habitat can be achieved.