The study relates to the Little Owl Athene noctua, Barn Owl Tyto alba, Tawny Owl Strix aluco, and Longeared Owl Asio otus. By coexistence is meant the simultaneous nesting, or territorial occupation in the breeding period, of more than one owl species within the area of one farm. Altogether, 48 territories of owls in 16 farm building complexes were found. Distances between nearest-neighbour nest sites were 16-203 m. In the Little Owl the average distance was 43 m ± 28, in the Tawny Owl 159 m ± 61. The number of young in broods of Little Owls nesting in coexistence was significantly lower compared to those nesting with other owls. The considerable incidence of coexistence found was related to the specific conditions of the study area: “islands” of farm building complexes offered favourable nesting sites, while the surrounding monoculture fields provided hunting territories with only limited opportunities for nesting. The productivity of the Little Owl and Barn Owl in the study area was low, probably because of interactions brought about by nesting in close proximity.
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Vol. 37 • No. 2