Family Typical Owls (Strigidae)

Least Concern

Black-and-white Owl (Ciccaba nigrolineata)


French: Chouette à lignes noires German: Bindenhalskauz Spanish: Cárabo blanquinegro

Ciccaba nigrolineata

P. L. Sclater

, 1859,

Oaxaca, Mexico


Apparently closest to C. huhula; sometimes considered conspecific with latter, but bigger, with significant differences in plumage and voice. Monotypic.


S & E Mexico to NW Venezuela, W Colombia and W Ecuador and extreme NW Peru (Piura).

Descriptive notes

35–40 cm; male 404–436 g, female 468–535 g (reports of 1075–1180 g in Costa Rica probably erroneous). Facial disc black with indistinct white-speckled... read more


Barking hoots, “hu whoOOo”, in series of 5–12 notes, which increase in pitch up... read more


Humid forest, semi-deciduous and deciduous forest, edges and clearing, gallery forest, tall... read more

Food and feeding

Insects, such as coleopterans (most commonly Scarabaeidae), orthopterans (Blattidae), Tettigonidae, Curculionidae, Cerambycidae; also small... read more


Lays late Mar–May, during mid to late dry season. Nest in tree hole, or sometimes among epiphytes (Philladentron, ... read more


Resident. In Guatemala, estimates of the home range of one male (using different methodologies)... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). CITES II. Considered uncommon to fairly common in Mexico; apparently widely distributed but scarce in Honduras; reported as uncommon... 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., Kirwan, G.M. & Marks, J.S. (2019). Black-and-white Owl (Ciccaba nigrolineata). 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 14 December 2019).