Saturday, June 30, 2012

Fearful Owl

Nesasio solomonensis
Say hello to the Fearful Owl, a very large owl that sports a dark face and very distinctive white eyebrows. They are very similar in appearance to the Whekau, or Laughing Owl. And if nothing is done about the downward trend they are on, they might just be extinct like the Whekau as well!

The Fearful Owl is a tropical owl found in lowland forests of Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. They are very rarely seen, but they do have their own Solomon Islands postage stamp! These Raptors are a top predator in their range, most commonly feeding on the Northern Common Cuscus, along with other Cuscus species. Cuscus hunting is one of the reasons that the Fearful Owls are now Vulnerable-- their main prey is being over-hunting by man, giving them fewer things to eat.

Another reason for their decline is the growth of the logging industry. Fearful Owls need the forests in order to survive, and without them they have no where to go. It is estimated that only 6,000 of these birds remain, and there are currently no major conservation efforts in place to keep them around.

IUCN Status : Vulnerable
Location : Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands
Size : Length up to 15in (38cm)
Classification : Phylum : Chordata -- Class : Aves -- Order : Strigiformes
Family : Strigidae -- Genus : Nesasio -- Species : N. solomonensis

1 comment:

  1. Why is it called the 'fearful owl'?
    Too bad its threatened. Such a beautiful bird, that's been around for hundreds of years and now might just disappear at the hands of people within the next few years.


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