Family Typical Owls (Strigidae)


White-fronted Scops-owl (Otus sagittatus)


French: Petit-duc à front blanc German: Weißstirn-Zwergohreule Spanish: Autillo frentiblanco

Ephialtes sagittatus


, 1848,

Malacca, Peninsular Malaysia


Relationships unclear. Monotypic.


S Myanmar (Tenasserim), S Thailand and Malay Peninsula; possible vagrant to N Sumatra on basis of an undated specimen, although some recent works suggest the report is “doubtful”#R or else do not include the species#R.

Descriptive notes

25–28 cm; c. 109–139 g (sexes not given). Along with O. gurneyi and O. megalotis, the largest of the scops-owls. Forehead, eyebrows,... read more


Song is a long, low-pitched hollow tremolo, gradually increasing in amplitude and ending quite... read more


Primary tropical forest, especially lowland evergreen forest in Thailand and Malaysia; also tall... read more

Food and feeding

Little information. Stomach contents comprised of insects, mostly moths.


Said to lay Feb–Mar in Thailand and Peninsular Malaysia. Nest in tree hole; clutch size 3–4 eggs; egg size c. 34·2... read more


Resident in Thailand and, presumably sedentary elsewhere as well.

Status and conservation

VULNERABLE. CITES II. Described as rare or very rare and declining throughout its range, but very poorly known; may prove locally more common in Malaysia, e.g. at Pasoh... 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., Boesman, P. & Marks, J.S. (2019). White-fronted Scops-owl (Otus sagittatus). 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).