Spotted Eagle-Owl | Bubo africanus

Robert's Birding Information: Spotted Eagle Owl

The Spotted Eagle-Owl is a Southern African bird that belongs to the strigidae bird family group which includes birds such as Typical owls.Spotted Eagle Owl

The description for the Spotted Eagle-Owl (Latin name Bubo africanus) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Bubo africanus can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 401 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 257. You will find a picture of the Spotted Eagle-Owl on page 272.

NOTE: The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition*. This edition contained a number of taxonomic changes as well as changes to English names used traditionally and in earlier editions of most bird books in South Africa. The following paragraph notes such changes if any.Spotted Eagle Owl

This bird is known as Spotted Eagle Owl in the Roberts 6th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the Spotted Eagle-Owl between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition.

The Spotted Eagle-Owl is known in Afrikaans as Gevlekte Ooruil.

The Spotted Eagle-Owl has a height of 47 cms and weighs around 700 gms. The head is coloured grey, brown while the bill is coloured black. The Bubo africanus has a white coloured throat, white legs and a grey, brown coloured back. The eyes are yellow.Juvenile Spotted Eagle Owl

The male Bubo africanus has physical features that are slightly different from the female bird.

Take note of the bird's main distinguishing features such as colour, size and leg length relative to the body size of the bird. Colours of a bird's body parts can be helpful. Be aware what may appear brown to one person is described in Roberts Birds using some other word ... for example brown, black. See colours used in Roberts.

Head is grey, brown.

Eyes are yellow.

Bill is black.

Legs are white.

Throat is white.

Back is grey, brown.

Spotted Eagle Owl Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground.

The Bubo africanus attacks its prey aerially and feeds on wing or takes the prey to a secluded venue where it is killed, torn into small pieces and eaten.

The diet includes small mammals such as rabbits, field mice and other rodents. Rodents are usually taken from the ground and killed using the sharp claws. The Spotted Eagle-Owl uses its hard bill to tear up the flesh.

This bird eats insects such as butterflies, bees, wasps, locusts and ants. These invertebrates are usually hawked aerially, killed and then eaten.

Spotted Eagle Owl Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The Spotted Eagle-Owl is a monogamous bird which means that the bird finds and breeds with one partner for the rest of its life. The bird lays between 1 to 6 eggs and they are coloured white.

The nest is built high up in the tree canopy and is protected from predators by branches and the dense green foliage.

The bird builds its nest on the ground with figs, straw and leaves. The nest is placed under a bush to protect the young from predators.

The bird builds its nest within a tree cavity just a few meters above the ground. The hole in the tree is normally reused in the next nesting season.

The Spotted Eagle-Owl is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.

The bird is mainly found in the Savanna grasslands where it breeds and feeds.

The bird is found in the African bushveld.

This bird is very common in most of the Southern African Forests.

The bird is an urban dweller as well, being at home in parks, gardens and in old vacated buildings.

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

The Spotted Eagle-Owl is mainly seen singly or in pairs in the wild.