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The Barn Owl Trust

Conserving the Barn Owl and its Environment

Watch us on Youtube Follow us on Twitter Join us on Facebook Live Barnowl webcam direct from a barnowl nestbox at our Owl Sanctuary

About the Trust

How the Barn Owl Trust started and grew.


Conserving the Barn Owl and its Environment

The Barn Owl Trust is a small charity working very hard to conserve one of the most beautiful birds on earth. Anyone who has ever watched a wild Barn Owl hunting at dusk has surely been touched by the experience but sadly these magical birds have become increasingly rare - and the reasons are all man-made. Lack of food due to intensive farming, the loss of roost and nest sites, road mortality, and a host of other factors are to blame.


The Beginnings of the Trust.

The Trust was founded by a small group of volunteers who believed not only that they could reverse this decline through practical conservation work, but also that they could use people's interest in the Barn Owl to increase environmental awareness. Thus the Trust's two-pronged approach and slogan "Conserving the Barn Owl and its Environment" was born.

Getting official

The Barn Owl Trust officially "hatched" on the 30th July 1988 with the arrival of its registered charity number and a donation of £25 from one of its founding Trustees. That was all it had: a number, twenty-five pounds, and a few highly committed and very active volunteers!


Although compared to other charities the Barn Owl Trust is still very small it has an impressive track record and an excellent reputation. In the early days effort was concentrated on habitat creation and boosting the number of wild Barn Owls by releasing additional birds from captivity. The Trust soon began highly detailed countywide surveys that highlighted the ongoing loss of occupied Barn Owl nesting and roosting sites. This prompted a major research project looking at the effects of barn conversion on local Barn Owl populations, which in turn led to positive changes in Local Authority planning policies. Other Barn Owl conservation projects have led to close working relationships with a wide range of conservation organisations.


Current Work:

Despite now having a small team of professional staff and being consulted by government, the Barn Owl Trust is still a grass-roots, non-profit organisation that prides itself on the sheer amount of practical conservation work it does. From erecting Barn Owl nesting boxes to creating ideal Barn Owl habitats, providing quality care for casualty owls to innovative research and thought provoking environmental educational work to specialist training for professionals - the Barn Owl Trust leads the field.

Watch a short film about the work and aims of the Barn Owl Trust.


The Barn Owl Trust is dedicated to conservation & education and does not operate a visitor centre.
Barn Owl Trust staff and volunteers
Waterleat, Ashburton, Devon TQ13 7HU
+44 (0) 1364 653026