Family Typical Owls (Strigidae)

Least Concern

Madagascar Long-eared Owl (Asio madagascariensis)


French: Hibou malgache German: Madagaskar-Waldohreule Spanish: Búho malgache
Other common names: Madagascar Owl

Otus Madagascariensis

A. Smith

, 1834,



Closely related to A. otus and A. abyssinicus. Has been treated as race of A. otus, but considered specifically distinct on grounds of smaller size, darker eyes and more orange-yellow plumage. Monotypic.



Descriptive notes

c. 40–50 cm; 770 g (n = 1 female). Medium-sized strigid; head dark brown, flecked with tan; long, similarly coloured ear tufts; buffy-tan facial disc, turning... read more


Long series of accipiter-like, barking “wan gwan, wan gwan” notes, accelerating and... read more


Humid evergreen forest, dry deciduous forest and gallery forest; also dense secondary woodland,... read more

Food and feeding

Mainly small mammals, including rats (Rattus) and mouse lemurs (Microcebus), with greatest proportion of diet introduced... read more


Little information. One nesting event, on Masoala peninsula, followed from pair formation to fledging: nest placed on clump of epiphytes c... read more



Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). CITES II. No information on global population size or population trends. Status difficult to assess because of secretive and... read more

Recommended citation

Olsen, P.D. & Marks, J.S. (2019). Madagascar Long-eared Owl (Asio madagascariensis). 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 12 December 2019).