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GALLERIES > BIRDS > STRIGIFORMES > STRIGIDAE > LONG-WHISKERED OWLET [Xenoglaux loweryi]


Long-whiskered Owlet Picture
 
 

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SPECIES INFO

The Long-whiskered Owlet (Xenoglaux loweryi) is a tiny owl that is endemic to a small area in the Andean mountains in Amazonas and San Martín in northern Peru. It is restricted to cloud forests with dense undergrowth and epiphytes at about 1890-2200 meters (6200-7220 ft) above sea level.

The Long-whiskered Owlet is mainly brown with a whitish belly and eye brow. The large eyes are reddish-orange. Although it has no ear tufts, this small owl's facial feathers extend out past its head, making it appear to have long tufts. The name of its monotypic genus Xenoglaux means "strange owl" and "? among others "? refers to these long facial feathers. With a total length of 13-14 cm (5-5˝ in), it is among the smallest owls in the world.

Very little is known about this species. It has been captured in mist nets on three separate occasions. Until early 2007, it had never been observed under "normal" circumstances: rangers and researchers working in the Area de Conservación Privada de Abra Patricia-Alto Nieva encountered it three times during daylight hours and recorded its calls during the night (American Bird Conservancy, 2007). It probably feeds on insects.

Due to its rarity, restricted habitat, and ongoing deforestation within its tiny range, it is currently considered endangered by BirdLife International. It is estimated that the total population is between 250 and 1000 individuals. The recently established Area de Conservación Privada Abra Patricia-Alto Nieva protects an important site for the owlet and other species restricted to this region, including Johnson's Tody-Tyrant, Royal Sunangel, and Ochre-fronted Antpitta.





                                     



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