Screaming bird in the night.

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jenny parker | 09:43 Sun 04th May 2008 | Animals & Nature
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Hi, i live in Hampshire near lots of trees and every night i hear this almighty screaming and then a softer noise, i'm thinking its a bird as the noise moves away quickly and then comes back. its a hugh noise and sometimes quite scary. it only happens are night when it is dark. I'd love to know what it is. Help.


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SOunds like owls hunting to me. Owls screech - usually a single long note, maybe going up slightly at the end. The softer 'ooo' is another owl answering back. Owls don't actually call twit-twoooo - that's a mythunderstanding!
The single screech can be very unnerving if you aren't expecting it.
I agree it is most likely an owl.

Although there is a small possibility that if this happens in the morning, just before dawn, it could be crows. In some districts they have learned to purposely crash into trees/large shrubs and scare small roosting birds out which are easy prey when it is still dark. They can also make an eerie unnerving call.
You can hear a barn owl here: /b/barnowl/index.asp

And the other birds too on that site.

Try all the owls and the grey heron, which can be a bit of night time screecher /g/greyheron/index.asp

i live in a town and i heard two birds screaming last night i think it was to much vodka in the local
Foxes screech and scream too - listen to all the fox noises here: html

So do cats.
It will be an owl it is the female, the male does the towit to woo bit and the female screeches, like humans really.
Sorry Ray - but one owl twits and the other owl twoos in response.

You can hear a pair of tawnies twit twooing here: tm
Hi Ethel But it is the female that screeches, or have I got that bit wrong?

PS Ethel, I am thinking of the barn owl with the screeching noise.
And more here about the beautiful tawny and its duet: s/207.shtml

I used to volunteer at my local conservation centre and a firm favourite was the nighttime bugs, bats and owls walks where children and adults would listen to the owl responding to a recording twit we broadcast.
Cheers Ethel great links, have stored them in favourites,
Both male and female barns screech, Ray, but the male has the stronger screech,

I love owls and am fortunate to see them often.
Cheers Ethel, I thought it was just the female barn owl that did that, we also love owls and have a few nesting in the forest behind our cottage, I find it very reassuring when I hear them as I take it as sign that nature is thriving well where I live, plenty of food for all that lives there. thanks again Ethel, your knowledge inspires me.
Yes, I am always please to see small bird predators such as magpies and crows - which is strange to a lot of people but it is a sure sign of a very successful breeding year for the small birds.

The noises you are hearing might be foxes or if there is a field nearby, lamas! We spent most of one summer wondering what a particular call was only to find out it was a lama! lol.
a real "woman" being knifed" scream could be a peacock
Tawny owls or maybe Little Owls - do you have them in Hampshire? I had a similar thing last spring (they haven't started yet!) and I contacted the RSPB, who were very helpful in identification. Mine sounded like what I can only describe as giant guinea pigs!! It turned out they were tawny owls sorting their territories out and apparently, little owls are very territorial and very noisy, too!
Lets try and clear some of the confusion here
Tawny owl- the familair tuwit, tuwoo- there is intense debate as to which partner does which bit! The tuwit is more accurately kirrick and is the males territiorial call. The hoo-hoo bit is believed to be used by both birds. However both do use a screech particularly during territiorial disputes.
The barn owl is known also as the screech owl and it does screech!!
DOnt forget we also have long-eared and short eared owls- ingonroing the Little Owl as it is about mostly in the day.
Long eared- male is hoo-hoo-hoo, females is a hoot
Short-eared- a series of rising and falling hoots.
So likely to be a barn methinks. though wouldnt tend to describe it as a huge sound.
Badgers and foxes also scream- though not so much at this time of year. A vixens scream is quite unearthly!

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Screaming bird in the night.

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