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Southern White-faced Scops-Owl
Ptilopsis granti

Strigiforme Order – Strigidae Family 

BIOMETRICS:
Length: 22-24 cm ; Wingspan: 68 cm ; Weight: 185-220 g

DESCRIPTION:
Southern White-faced Scops-Owl is a medium-sized owl with conspicuous ear tufts and white face edged with black.

Southern White-faced Scops-Owl has grey upperparts with dark grey vermiculations and streaks. Underparts are pale grey with white feather bases, dark grey streaks and fine grey bars. Flight feathers and tail are grey with darker bars.   
Facial disk is pale grey to white with broad black rim. Prominent ear tufts are black and grey. Bill is pale grey. Eyes are dark yellow to deep orange. Legs and partially feathered toes are grey-brown.

Both sexes are similar in size and plumage.
Juvenile resembles adults but it is paler and browner, with less marking on throat and breast.
Nestlings are covered with grey down with darker bars.

VOICE: SOUNDS BY XENO-CANTO
Southern White-faced Scops-Owl’s call is a bubbling series starting fast and rising in pitch at the end “popopopopopopreoo”.   

HABITAT:
Southern White-faced Scops-Owl lives in savannahs, open and riverine woodlands with sparse ground cover, and also in semi-desert thorn scrub to forest clearings.
It avoids treeless areas and continuous forests.

RANGE:
Southern White-faced Scops-Owl is widespread across sub-Saharan Africa.

BEHAVIOUR:
Southern White-faced Scops-Owl is a fully nocturnal species. When perched, it stands upright within dense cover, or against a branch.
It hunts on the ground where it catches small mammals, birds and insects.

FLIGHT:
Southern White-faced Scops-Owl is only seen in flight when it flushes at day.

REPRODUCTION:
Southern White-faced Scops-Owl uses abandoned stick nests of small hawks, or holes in trees. They breed from May to November.
Female lays 3 to 4 eggs. Incubation lasts about 31 days, by both adults. Young leave the nest before one month old, and they reach their independence at six weeks.

DIET:
Southern White-faced Scops-Owl feeds mainly on insects and spiders, but also on small rodents and birds.

PROTECTION / THREATS / STATUS:
Southern White-faced Scops-Owl is generally uncommon, but locally common at rodent’s outbreaks.  

Fr: Petit-duc de Grant
All : Südbüscheleule
Esp : Autillo Cariblanco Sureño
Russe : Совка южная белолицая

Photographs by Callie de Wet
Flickr Galleries

Text by Nicole Bouglouan

Sources:

HANDBOOK OF THE BIRDS OF THE WORLD Vol 5 by Josep del Hoyo-Andrew Elliott-Jordi Sargatal - Lynx Edicions - ISBN: 8487334253

BIRDS OF AFRICA SOUTH OF THE SAHARA by Ian Sinclair and Peter Ryan - Princeton University Press Princeton and Oxford - ISBN: 0691118159

Avibase (Lepage Denis)

The Hawk Conservancy Trust (Hilary Smith)

World Owl Trust      

Wikipedia (Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia)

 

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