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Pernambuco Pygmy Owl - BirdForum Opus

Glaucidium mooreorum

Identification

Brown crown and face, white spots, white collar, back, upper wing coverts and rump brown, dark brown tail. The abdomen is white with yellowish brown streaks. Eyes are yellow, the bill greenish-yellow, and toes are orange-yellow.

Similar species

Apparantly, this species cannot be safely separated from Least Pygmy-Owl on plumage characters (even when evaluating specimens from a museum) but only on voice.

Distribution

North-eastern Brazil. Distribution does not seem to overlap with Least Pygmy Owl.

Taxonomy

This is a monotypic species1.

This bird was was first described in December 2002 when two study skins were examined in Pernambuco, Brazil. The skins were originally collected in 1980 and thought to be subspecies of the Least Pygmy Owl Glaucidium minutissimum or Amazonian Pygmy Owl Glaucidium hardyi. Upon closer examination of the skins, and vocalisations of the birds also obtained in 1980, it was concluded that this was a new species. The name mooreorum was chosen in honour of Dr. Gordon Moore and his wife Betty, who have made significant contributions to conservation.

There has been proposals that the name mooreorum was incorrect and that minutissimum (currently used for Least Pygmy Owl) really should belong to this species.

Habitat

Forest

Behaviour

Diet includes insects and small mammals, birds and reptiles.

Vocalizations destinguish this species from similar species.

Conservation status

The Pernambuco Pygmy-Owl is currently considered as critically endangered by BirdLife International. Apart from the two specimens collected in 1980 and a sonogram created from one male in 2002 there are no other records of this taxon.

Reference

  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2014. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: Version 6.9., with updates to August 2014. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. König, C. and F. Weick 2008. Owls of the World, second edition. Christopher Helm, London. ISBN 978-0-7136-6548-2
  3. SACC proposal to change scientific name read at 2 July 2008

Recommended Citation

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