Brown Wood Owl (Strix leptogrammica)

Brown Wood Owl

[order] STRIGIFORMES | [family] Strigidae | [latin] Strix leptogrammica | [authority] Temminck, 1831 | [UK] Brown Wood Owl | [FR] Chouette des bois | [DE] Malaienkauz | [ES] Carabo Oriental | [NL] Bruine Bosuil


Monotypic species


Members of the genus Strix are the wood owls. They are medium to large owls, having a large, rounded head and no ear-tufts. The comparatively large eyes range from yellow through to dark brown. Colouring is generally designed fro camouflage in woodland, and a number of the member of this genus have colour phases. There are 20 species scattered practically throughout the globe with the exception of Australasia, the South Pacific and Madagascar, where the genus Ninox takes its place. There being no clear generic differences between Strix and Ciccaba genera, and DNA evidence suggesting very close relationships, many authorities now merge the latter into the former.

Physical charateristics

The Brown Wood Owl is medium large (45-57 cm), with upperparts uniformly dark brown, with faint white spotting on the shoulders. The underparts are buff with brown streaking. The facial disc is brown or rufous, edged with white and without concentric barring, and the eyes are dark brown. There is a white neckband. The sexes are similar.

Listen to the sound of Brown Wood Owl

[audio: Wood Owl.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 94 cm wingspan max.: 130 cm
size min.: 45 cm size max.: 57 cm
incubation min.: 29 days incubation max.: 31 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 1  
      eggs max.: 2  


Oriental Region : widespread. Occurs in North-East India through Myanmar, southern Thailand, Indonchina
south to Malay Peninsula, the Greater Sundas and Bali. Resident in Pen.
Malaysia at low elevations south to Singapore where it is very rare.


The Brown Wood Owl inhabits thick, undisturbed lowland tropical forest, both deciduous & evergreen


They build their own nests in tree cavities, caves or on cliff ledges and line them with a few feathers. The clutch size is 1-2 eggs which are incubated for 30 days.

Feeding habits

The Brown Owl is a nocturnal hunter, feeding mainly on small mammals, birds up to the size of pheasants, fruit bats, reptiles & some insects

Video Brown Wood Owl


copyright: Dominique Schwartz


This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Brown Wood Owl status Least Concern



Distribution map

Brown Wood Owl distribution range map

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