Family Typical Owls (Strigidae)

Least Concern

Central American Pygmy-owl (Glaucidium griseiceps)


Taxonomy

French: Chevêchette à tête grise German: Graukopf-Zwergkauz Spanish: Mochuelo centroamericano
Taxonomy:

Glaucidium griseiceps

Sharpe

, 1875,

tropical lowlands of Alta Vera Paz, Guatemala

.

Considered a member of G. minutissimum complex, which includes also G. palmarum, G. sanchezi, G. parkeri and G. hardyi; further study needed to determine true relationships. Recently separated from G. minutissimum on basis of vocalizations. Racial differentiation uncertain, and occultum and rarum may be no more than colour variants; species regarded by some as monotypic#R#R#R; more study required. Three subspecies tentatively recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • G. g. occultum R. T. Moore, 1947 – S Mexico (SE Veracruz, N Oaxaca and Chiapas).
  • G. g. griseiceps Sharpe, 1875 – Guatemala, Belize and Honduras.
  • G. g. rarum Griscom, 1931 – Costa Rica, Panama, NW Colombia and NW Ecuador#R#R.
  • Descriptive notes

    13–18 cm; male 50·6–58·8 g, female c. 56 g. Very small pygmy-owl; crown and nape brown-grey to grey-brown; forecrown with fine pale buff to whitish... read more

    Voice

    Song begins with 2–4 equally spaced hoots, followed by very brief pause, then series of 6... read more

    Habitat

    Humid tropical evergreen forest and adjacent tall secondary growth, semi-open areas, old cacao... read more

    Food and feeding

    Poorly known. Probably large insects and other invertebrates such as spiders, reptiles such as lizards, small birds such as tanagers and... read more

    Breeding

    Very little information. Reported to lay from Apr–May and to nest in natural tree cavity or old woodpecker hole; clutch size 2–... read more

    Movements

    Presumably resident.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). CITES II. In Mexico generally uncommon but locally fairly common, e.g. near Valle Nacional (Oaxaca), and around the Mayan ruins of... 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. (2018). Central American Pygmy-owl (Glaucidium griseiceps). 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 https://www.hbw.com/node/55070 on 11 December 2018).