Family Typical Owls (Strigidae)

Least Concern

Hume's Boobook (Ninox obscura)


French: Ninoxe de Hume German: Dunkelkauz Spanish: Nínox oscuro
Other common names: Hume's Hawk-owl

Ninox obscurus

A. O. Hume

, 1872,

#R Camorta, Nicobars; probably error = Andamans#R


Until recently considered conspecific with N. scutulata (along with N. japonica and N. randi), but, although vocally similar to scutulata, it differs in its reduced white spot above bill (ns[1]); plain dark brown uppersides and underparts (4); barred, not plain, undertail-coverts (2); unbarred undertail (2)#R. Monotypic.


Andaman Is. Previously thought to occur also in Nicobar Is, which given as type locality, but this believed erroneous#R.

Descriptive notes

26–30 cm. Medium-sized boobook, dark chocolate-brown on most of plumage, with a slightly paler, rufous-brown belly, prominent white bands on vent, whitish spot between... read more


Song a repeated, two-syllabled “wooo-oop, wooo-oop, wooo-oop”, the second note higher... read more


Inhabits lowland forest, forest edge, borders of rubber plantations and areas near human... read more

Food and feeding

Very little information. Crepuscular and nocturnal. Said to take beetles and grasshoppers, and observed preying on Glossy Swiftlets (... read more


Almost no information. Young bird thought to be about one month old captured in late May.



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). CITES II. Thought to be common and rather tame, and uses human-modified habitats. Population presumed to be stable, but no data on... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Marks, J.S. (2019). Hume's Boobook (Ninox obscura). 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 18 November 2019).