“Who cooks for you? Who cooks for you-all?” – is a bird call I never heard living on Long Island in New York. Barred owls are considered accidental species for the Island. Perhaps it is the water barrier; the island is separated from New England by the Long Island Sound since this owl does not travel long distances. Perhaps it is the lack of large treed forests and fragmentation of habitats caused by suburban sprawl.
Here in central Florida, the barred owl lives in the mature forests and in my community at Arbor Lakes it inhabits the cypress swamps along Lake Tsala Apopka. This owl hunts by sitting on a high perch and scanning below to watch and listen for squirrels, rabbits, mice, lizards, birds and other prey to eat. I have seen these owls on tree limbs over the swamps where they are hunt for fish.
I do enjoy the call of the barred owl. It brings back fond memories of camping with my kids in New England. So sing away!