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African Wood-Owl | Strix woodfordii

The African Wood-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 African Wood-Owl (Latin name Strix woodfordii) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Strix woodfordii can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 394 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 260. You will find a picture of the African Wood-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 Wood Owl in the Roberts 6th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the African Wood-Owl between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The African Wood-Owl is known in Afrikaans as Bosuil.

The African Wood-Owl has a height of 36 cms and weighs around 250 gms. The head is coloured brown while the bill is coloured grey. The Strix woodfordii has a white coloured throat, brown legs and a brown 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 brown

Eyes are brown

Bill is grey

Legs are brown

Throat is white

Back is brown

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 Strix woodfordii 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 African Wood-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 .

Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The African Wood-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 1to 3 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 African Wood-Owl is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.

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

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

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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