Thought perhaps to form a species-group with M. guatemalae, M. vermiculatus, M. hoyi and M. sanctaecatarinae; the most recent genetic analysis places it in clade with M. asio, M. kennicottii, M. cooperi, M. barbarus, M. sanctaecatarinae, M. roboratus, M. watsonii, M. guatemalae, and M. vermiculatus#R. Sometimes considered to include some or most of these as races, but all now shown to be vocally distinct, and treatment as separate species supported by DNA evidence. Name argentinus has been erroneously applied to S populations of present species, but it might instead apply to M. sanctaecatarinae (which see). Taxonomy of Megascops in S Brazil and Argentine province of Misiones remains to be clarified. Monotypic.
SE Brazil (S Bahia and S Goiás S to Santa Catarina), SE Paraguay and extreme NE Argentina (N Misiones); an isolated population in NE Brazil (Alagoas, E Pernambuco) probably belongs to this species#R.
Food and feeding
Status and conservation
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