The Owl

The Owl

A Biography



Uncover the life of owls through this beautiful guide to these secretive and charismatic birds from the bestselling author of The Robin, The Wren, and The Swan.

Owls are among the most mysterious birds in the world. Their hauntingly beautiful calls and mostly nocturnal habits have long captured our collective imagination, inspiring more superstitions, folktales, and myths than any other group of birds. Seven species of owl - the tawny, little, barn, long-eared, short-eared, snowy and eagle owl - can be found in the British Isles (out of sixteen different kinds across Europe). They have lived alongside people for thousands of years, yet we still know so little about their day-to-day lives.

Discover their fascinating lives, from the moment they first hatch, to the way they hunt their prey and how they raise the next generation. Explore the rich folklore they've inspired around the world and learn how, with a bit of luck, you can catch a glimpse of them yourself.

With beautiful illustrations throughout, and expert birdwatching tips, this eye-opening biography reveals the hidden secrets of one of the world's most famous and beloved birds.


  • Seven species of owl make their home in the British Isles, and this stunning volume is a worthy tribute to them. It shouts quality with luscious cream-coloured paper and wonderful illustrations. That said, the main delight is in Stephen's detailed examination of these nocturnal birds. His engaging and eye-opening text covers fascinating facts, history, science myths and folklore as well as providing birdwatching tops. This book will not only be well-read but will also be kept as a useful reference.
    Lorraine Connolly, The Countryman

About the author

Stephen Moss

STEPHEN MOSS is a naturalist, author and broadcaster. In a distinguished career at the BBC Natural History Unit his credits included Springwatch, Birds Britannia and The Nature of Britain. He is the president of the Somerset Wildlife Trust and a senior lecturer in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University. Originally from London, he now lives with his wife and children on the Somerset Levels. His books include The Robin, The Wren, The Twelve Birds of Christmas, The Swallow, The Swan and The Owl.
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