Verreaux's (Giant) Eagle-Owl | Bubo lacteus

Robert's Birding Information: Verreauxs (Giant) Eagle Owl

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

The description for the Verreaux's Eagle-Owl (Latin name Bubo lacteus) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Bubo lacteus can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 402 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 258. You will find a picture of the Verreaux's 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.

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

The Verreaux's Eagle-Owl is known in Afrikaans as Reuse-ooruil.

The Verreaux's Eagle-Owl has a height of 61 cms and weighs around 1700 gms. The head is coloured grey while the bill is coloured blue, grey. The Bubo lacteus has a grey, white coloured throat, white legs and a grey, white coloured back. The eyes are brown.

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.

Eyes are brown.

Bill is blue, grey.

Legs are white.

Throat is grey, white.

Back is grey, white.

Verreauxs (Giant) Eagle Owl Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground.

This birds forages for fish and other aquatic dwellers through surface sizing and diving for food in the water.

The Bubo lacteus 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 Verreaux's 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.

Verreauxs (Giant) Eagle Owl Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The Verreaux's 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 2 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 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 bird builds its nest in a hole in the ground.

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

The bird is found in the arid and semi-arid regions of Southern Africa and it can withstand high day and night temperatures.

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

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

The Verreaux's Eagle-Owl is mainly seen singly or in pairs in the wild.