The barred owl is a generalist predator. The principal prey of this owl are meadow voles , followed by mice and shrews of various species; other mammals preyed upon include rats , squirrels , rabbits , bats , moles , opossums , mink , and weasels .   A barred owl was photographed in Minnesota in 2012 grabbing and flying off with a full-grown domestic cat , a semi-regular prey item for the great horned owl but previously unknown to be taken by this species.  Birds are taken occasionally and commonly include woodpeckers , grouse , quails , jays , icterids , doves , pigeons   and even domestic ducks , and chickens , where they will swoop through small openings in enclosed and covered runs. Less commonly, other raptors are preyed upon, including smaller owls .  Avian prey are typically taken as they settle into nocturnal roosts, because these owls are not generally nimble enough to catch birds on the wing. It occasionally wades into water to capture fish , turtles , frogs and crayfish .     Additional prey include snakes , lizards , salamanders , slugs , scorpions , beetles , crickets , grasshoppers , and earthworms .   Barred owls have been known to be attracted to campfires and lights where they forage for large insects. Prey is usually devoured on the spot. Larger prey is carried to a feeding perch and torn apart before eating.