The Weirdest Owl Pellets

The Weirdest Owl Pellets

The idea of purchasing an animal’s vomit may sound stomach churning, but it’s often an educational experience that provides insight into what prey the animal consumed. The weirdest owl pellets are regurgitated balls of fur, bones, and shells consumed by owls. You can break them to explore the diet of this nocturnal winged predator.

When purchasing the weirdest owl pellets, you’ll receive a total of six large-sized pellets, all of which come from the barn owl. Also known as Tyto alba, the barn owl is one of the most common bird species in the world. In fact, it’s found nearly everywhere, except for the polar caps and desert regions.

What’s amazing about the barn owl is that it consumes an average of six rodents or voles each night. Based on these figures, the barn owl consumes about one-third of its total body weight nightly. Unlike hawks and other birds of prey, however, the barn owl can’t fully digest its food, so it coughs up indigestible parts of its prey like fur, bones, and teeth in the form of pellets.

There are businesses that collect and sell these owl pellets for educational purposes. In schools, for instance, teachers use owl pellets as a study project for biology. A teacher may distribute owl pellets to his or her students, asking them to dissect the pellets and identify their contents. And outside the classroom, people who are interested in owls or biology, in general, may conduct their own owl pellet dissections.

While it’s recommended that you wear gloves while dissecting and handling the owl pellets, you can rest assured knowing that they’ve been sanitized. According to the manufacturer, the owl pellets are baked in a large cooking oven at 330 to 340 degrees for at least 40 minutes to kill potentially harmful bacteria and viruses.

So, how do you dissect an owl pellet? After putting on a pair of gloves, place the pellet on a table or similar flat surface where it’s illuminated with a lamp. Next, use a pair of tweezers to gently pull apart the owl pellet. As you remove some of the fur, it should break into smaller pieces. You can then remove and categorize the specific contents of the pellet.

There are other owl pellets available for sale, but many of them contain artificial contents, meaning they aren’t genuine pellets. For a true lesson on owl biology, stick with the weirdest owl pellets shown here.