The Barn Owl (תנשמת) is the most widely distributed species of owl, and one of the most widespread of all birds. It is most recognizable by its mask-like face. The Barn Owl feeds primarily on small vertebrates, particularly rodents. Farmers, also in Israel, often find these owls more effective than poison in keeping down rodent pests, and they encourage Barn Owl habitation by providing nest sites. The plumage surface of barn owls is covered by black spots. For each individual the number, size and location of spots is unique.