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Pearl-spotted Owlet | Glaucidium perlatum

The Pearl-spotted Owlet is a Southern African bird that belongs to the strigidae bird family group which includes birds such as Typical owls.

The description for the Pearl-spotted Owlet (Latin name Glaucidium perlatum) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Glaucidium perlatum can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 398 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 261. You will find a picture of the Pearl-spotted Owlet 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 Pearl-spotted Owl in the Roberts 6th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the Pearl-spotted Owlet between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The Pearl-spotted Owlet is known in Afrikaans as Witkoluil.

The Pearl-spotted Owlet has a height of 21 cms and weighs around 65 gms. The head is coloured grey, white while the bill is coloured greenish yellow. The Glaucidium perlatum has a white, brown coloured throat, white legs and a cinnamon coloured back. The eyes are yellow.

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, white

Eyes are yellow

Bill is greenish yellow

Legs are white

Throat is white, brown

Back is cinnamon

Feeding Habits ...

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

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 Pearl-spotted Owlet 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 .

Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The Pearl-spotted Owlet 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 2 to 4 eggs and they are coloured white.

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 Pearl-spotted Owlet is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.

The bird is found in the African bushveld

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

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

The Pearl-spotted Owlet is mainly seen singly or in pairs in the wild.

It is also seen in flocks

The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition * edited by PAR Hockey, WRJ Dean and PG Ryan, published by "The Trustees of the John Voelcker Bird Book Fund."

copyright: Tony Roocroft +27-11-454-0105

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