Balsas Screech Owl (Megascops seductus)

Balsas Screech Owl

[order] STRIGIFORMES | [family] Strigidae | [latin] Megascops seductus | [authority] Moore, 1941 | [UK] Balsas Screech Owl | [FR] Petit duc de Balsas | [DE] Balsas-Kreischeule | [ES] Autillo del Balsas | [NL] Balsaschreeuwuil


Genus Species subspecies Region Range
Megascops seductus MA sw Mexico


The genus Megascops comprises 22 living species are known at present, but new ones are frequently recognized and unknown ones are still being discovered on a regular basis, especially in the Andes. For most of the 20th century, this genus was merged with the Old World scops-owls in Otus, but nowadays it is again considered separate based on a range of behavioral, biogeographical, morphological and DNA sequence data. Screech-owls are restricted to the Americas. Some species formerly placed with them are nowadays considered more distinct.
As usual for owls, female screech-owls are usually larger and fatter than the males of their species, with owls of both sexes being compact in size, shape, and height. The Eastern Screech-owl Megascops asio is one of the smallest species of owls in North America. All of the birds in this genus are small and agile. Screech-owls are generally colored in various brownish hues with usually a whitish, patterned underside, which helps to camouflage them against the bark of trees. Some are polymorphic, occurring in a grayish- and a reddish-brown morph.

Physical charateristics

More brownish than other screech-owls. Also with a pinkish wish. Has brown eyes and greenlike bill. Beste identified from very similar congeners by its call.

wingspan min.: 50 cm wingspan max.: 51 cm
size min.: 24 cm size max.: 26 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 0   eggs min.: 0  
      eggs max.: 0  


Middle America : Southwest Mexico


It inhabits thorn-forest and arid open to semi-open areas with scattered trees, as well as secondary growth, at elevations of 600-1,500 m. Its diet is little known, but insects and small vertebrates have been recorded4. Breeding has been noted in June.


No data

Feeding habits

Very much unkown, insects and small vertebrates are part of its diet.

Video Balsas Screech Owl


copyright: Monica y Hector


This species is classed as Near Threatened because it has a moderately small range, in which it is threatened by habitat loss. A re-assessment of the threats to the species’s habitats may result in it being downlisted to Least Concern.
Megascops seductus has a moderately small range in west-central Mexico, where it is a fairly common resident in Jalisco, Colima, Michoacan, Morelas and Guerrero. Significant areas of suitable habitat remain, and surveys are likely to find the species locally common at additional sites.
Balsas Screech Owl status Near Threatened


Presumed sedentary

Distribution map

Balsas Screech Owl distribution range map

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *