Is Owl Halal Or Haram in Islam?

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Welcome readers! Have you ever thought about whether it’s allowed to eat owls, those cute birds we often see in trees, or flying around at night, according to our religion? Well, today we’re discussing just that – whether or not owls are considered Halal in accordance with Islamic dietary laws.

In this article, we will jump into understanding the concept of Halal and Haram birds. Read along to find out all about owls and their status within Halal restrictions.

Key Takeaways

✅ Islamic dietary laws classify certain animals as halal (permissible) and haram (forbidden), and owls fall into the category of haram due to their classification as birds of prey.
✅ Quranic verses and Hadiths provide guidance on permissible and forbidden foods, and the consumption of owl meat is prohibited.
✅ Efforts are being made to protect owls due to their dwindling numbers and endangered status.

About Owl

In the animal kingdom, owls (Strigiformes) belong to the order Strigiformes characterized by their distinctive facial features – large eyes and round head shape with flat faces, hooked beaks, sharp talons, soft plumage, and silent flight. They are primarily active during dusk or nighttime while roosting or nesting during daylight hours.

Owls typically live solitarily in pairs or small groups and mainly feed on mice, rats, insects, other small mammals, snakes, frogs, fish, and even other birds depending on their size. There are over 250 species across five continents but mostly found in tropical rainforests, deserts, grasslands, wetlands, tundra regions, boreal forests, temperate coniferous and deciduous forests worldwide.

Some common examples of owl families are Barn Owl, Scops Owl, Horned Owl, Pygmy Owl, Collared Scops Owl, Tawny Owl, and Great Horned Owl.

General Ruling About Food

Eating halal and healthy food is a fundamental principle taught by Islam to its followers. This includes avoiding certain items deemed haram or non-permissible under Islamic doctrine.

Sources such as the holy book, the Quran, and sayings from Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), known as Hadiths, lay down explicit instructions concerning what Muslims should abstain from consuming.

يَـٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلنَّاسُ كُلُوا۟ مِمَّا فِى ٱلْأَرْضِ حَلَـٰلًۭا طَيِّبًۭا وَلَا تَتَّبِعُوا۟ خُطُوَٰتِ ٱلشَّيْطَـٰنِ ۚ إِنَّهُۥ لَكُمْ عَدُوٌّۭ مُّبِينٌ

“O humanity! Eat from what is lawful and good on the earth and do not follow Satan’s footsteps. He is truly your sworn enemy.”
Al-Baqarah 2:168

Detailed explanations about prohibited food can be found in Surah Al-Maidah verse 3, which states the following.

حُرِّمَتْ عَلَيْكُمُ ٱلْمَيْتَةُ وَٱلدَّمُ وَلَحْمُ ٱلْخِنزِيرِ وَمَآ أُهِلَّ لِغَيْرِ ٱللَّهِ بِهِۦ وَٱلْمُنْخَنِقَةُ وَٱلْمَوْقُوذَةُ وَٱلْمُتَرَدِّيَةُ وَٱلنَّطِيحَةُ وَمَآ أَكَلَ ٱلسَّبُعُ إِلَّا مَا ذَكَّيْتُمْ وَمَا ذُبِحَ عَلَى ٱلنُّصُبِ

Forbidden to you are carrion, blood, and swine; what is slaughtered in the name of any other than Allah; what is killed by strangling, beating, a fall, or by being gored to death; what is partly eaten by a predator unless you slaughter it; and what is sacrificed on altars.
Al-Maidah 5:3

Prohibited food includes carrion, blood, pork, and meat slaughtered in the name of other than Allah. Prophet Muhammad ﷺ  also describes very well about prohibited animals.

كُلُّ ذِي نَابٍ مِنَ السِّبَاعِ فَأَكْلُهُ حَرَامٌ

Narrated Abu Hurairah that the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ  (peace be upon Him) said :
“Every beast with fangs is forbidden to eat”
Hadith Muslim no. 1933
عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ قَالَ نَهَىرَسُولُ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- عَنْ كُلِّ ذِى نَابٍ مِنَ السِّبَاعِوَعَنْ كُلِّ ذِى مِخْلَبٍ مِنَ الطَّيْرِ

“From Ibnu Abbas said: “The Messenger of Allah, may God bless him and grant him peace, forbade from every wild animal that has sharp teeth and claws (predators)”
Hadith Muslim no. 1934

Is Owl Halal?

It is clear that the owl is haram based on the hadith above. Just like any bird of prey like hawk or eagle, we are forbidden to eat its meat.

Find out more :
Is kiwi bird halal?
Is parrot halal?

Final Thought

Eating owl meat is considered Haram according to the principles set forth by Islam. Similarly, efforts are being made to prohibit excessive hunting of owls to avoid further depletion of their already dwindling numbers, which have resulted in various types of owls becoming endangered.

It is essential that steps be taken to preserve and increase the owl population, ensuring a healthier future for these fascinating creatures.

Wallahu A’lam (Allah knows best)


Is owl meat halal?

Owl meat is clearly haram as stated in the hadith above.

Why is owl haram in Islam?

Owls are considered haram (forbidden) in Islam because they are classified as birds of prey. According to Islamic dietary laws, it is prohibited to consume the meat of birds that have sharp talons or claws.

This prohibition is based on the hadith of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ  (peace be upon him) which states that every wild animal with sharp teeth and claws, including birds, is forbidden to eat. Since owls have sharp talons and are considered predatory birds, their meat is not allowed for Muslims to consume according to Islamic principles.

Are owls sacred?

Owls are not specifically considered sacred in Islam. In Islamic tradition, owls are generally treated like other birds. While some cultures may have various superstitions or beliefs about owls, there is no specific religious significance or injunction related to them in Islam.

Furthermore, the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ  (peace be upon him) has mentioned the owl several times. One of His hadiths is :

حَدَّثَنَا يَحْيَى بْنُ خَلَفٍ، حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو عَاصِمٍ، حَدَّثَنَا ابْنُ جُرَيْجٍ، عَنْ عَطَاءٍ، قَالَ يَقُولُ النَّاسُ الصَّفَرُ وَجَعٌ يَأْخُذُ فِي الْبَطْنِ ‏.‏ قُلْتُ فَمَا الْهَامَةُ قَالَ يَقُولُ النَّاسُ الْهَامَةُ الَّتِي تَصْرُخُ هَامَةُ النَّاسِ وَلَيْسَتْ بِهَامَةِ الإِنْسَانِ إِنَّمَا هِيَ دَابَّةٌ

Narrated ‘Ata:

People said: safar is a pain within the belly. I asked: What is hamah? He said: People said (believed) that hamah which is an owl or a nightbird and which shrieks is the spirit of men. It is not the spirit of men. It is an animal.

Is seeing an owl at night is a bad luck?

No, there are no such myths and superstitions in Islam.

Is it halal to keep an owl as a pet?

It is permissible to keep birds on condition that they are not tortured and treated with great affection.

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