Hawaiian Owl

Asio flammeus

Order

STRIGIFORMES

Family

Barn Owls, Typical Owls (Tytonidae & Strigidae)

Code 4

SEOW

Code 6

ASIFLA

ITIS

ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Endangered

The Hawaiian Owl is endemic to Hawaii. They inhabit lowland pastures and fields, as well as higher forest areas at elevations up to 8,000 feet throughout the islands of Hawaii. Pueo nest on the ground, which makes their eggs and young susceptible to predation by the introduced Small Asian Mongoose and other predators, as well as by bulldozers. Their numbers are declining rapidly, particularly in the last two decades, and especially on the island of Oahu, upon which they were at one time very prevalent. These owls are now listed as an Endangered Species.

IBIRD EXPLORER GENERAL

PHOTO SHARING AND DISCUSSION

BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY

SUMMARY

Overview

Hawaiian Owl: This medium-sized owl has both light and dark brown mottled upperparts, dark-streaked, pale buff underparts, large round head with pale buff facial disk with fine brown tinges, black around eyes, small ear tufts, yellow eyes, and black bill. Feeds mostly on rodents and mongoose. The flight is erratic with flopping wing beats. Sexes are similar. Subspecies of the Short-eared Owl.

 

Range and Habitat

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Hawaiian Owl SONGS AND CALLS

Hawaiian Owl 3

Mating call given by a male at sunset.

Hawaiian Owl D1

Repeated "hoo-hoo" call.

Similar Sounding


Voice Text

"Tchak-tchak-tchak" but generally silent

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The female lays her eggs asynchronously, from 2 to 7 days apart.
  • The Hawaiian Owl is thought to have settled in shortly after the first Polynesians came to Hawaii, which may have been around 300 A.D. It is considered endemic, found only in the islands.
  • The Pueo or the Hawaiian Owl has always been sacred to the people of Hawaii, and treated with the utmost love and respect. It is an important ancestral spirit in Hawaiian culture, and is seen as a family protector. Because they are believed to be especially skilled in battle and a bringer of good luck, many Hawaiian legends and myths focus on these birds.
  • Unlike most owls, Pueo are diurnal, active during the day, and are commonly seen hovering or soaring over open areas.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP HAWAII

About this Hawaii Map

This map shows how this species is distributed across the Hawaiian island.

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Artist

Chris Vest

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

BACKYARD BIRDING

BIRDS AND BIRDING

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UnderpartsX

Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

UpperpartsX
Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X