Family Typical Owls (Strigidae)

Least Concern

Bare-shanked Screech-owl (Megascops clarkii)


French: Petit-duc de Clark German: Nacktbein-Kreischeule Spanish: Autillo serrano

Otus clarkii

L. Kelso and E. H. Kelso

, 1935,

Calobre, Panama


Relationships unknown. Monotypic.


Costa Rica S to extreme NW Colombia.

Descriptive notes

23–25 cm; 130–190 g. Fairly large screech-owl with large head, ear tufts smaller than most other Megascops. Face cinnamon with poorly defined facial rim... read more


Primary song a deep “wook wook wook wook”, repeated at intervals of few seconds;... read more


Cloudforest and humid, dense mountain forest and forest edge; sometimes occurs in thinner upland... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly large insects, including crickets, grasshoppers and beetles, also spiders; some small rodents and probably other vertebrates also... read more


Very little known. Lays mid-Feb–May; fledged young seen May–Aug. Only known nest, found in Costa Rica in 1994, was in natural... read more


No information. Adults presumably resident.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). CITES II. Restricted-range species: present in Costa Rica in several protected areas, such as Volcán Poás National Park... read more

Recommended citation

Holt, D.W., Berkley, R., Deppe, C., Enríquez Rocha, P., Petersen, J.L., Rangel Salazar, J.L., Segars, K.P., Wood, K.L. & Marks, J.S. (2019). Bare-shanked Screech-owl (Megascops clarkii). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 9 December 2019).