Jamaican Owl (Pseudoscops grammicus)

Jamaican Owl

[order] STRIGIFORMES | [family] Strigidae | [latin] Pseudoscops grammicus | [authority] Gosse, 1847 | [UK] Jamaican Owl | [FR] Hibou de la Jamaique | [DE] Jamaica-Ohreule | [ES] Buho Jamaicano | [NL] Jamaicaanse Uil


Genus Species subspecies Region Range
Pseudoscops grammicus NA Jamaica


Owls of the genus Pseudoscops have a superficial resemblance to several similarly-sized owls in the genus Asio, they have often has been placed in Asio or in the monotypic genus Rhinoptynx. The classification of the genus Pseudoscops is based on differences in cranial osteology between pseudoscops and several species of Asio.

Physical charateristics

An unmistakable bird, with jet-black eyes, conspicuous ear-tufts, and a rufous overall coloration. It has hazel eyes, long ear tufts and a grayish-yellow bill.

Listen to the sound of Jamaican Owl

[audio:http://www.planetofbirds.com/MASTER/STRIGIFORMES/Strigidae/sounds/Jamaican Owl.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 27 cm size max.: 34 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 0   eggs min.: 1  
      eggs max.: 3  


North America : Jamaica


The Jamaican Owl can be found in open woodland, forest edge, open parkland, and even gardens


It lays its eggs in tree cavities or tree forks, hidden in vegetation. Clutch size 2 eggs.

Feeding habits

It is nocturnal and eats mainly large insects, spiders, amphibians, lizards, birds and rodents.

Video Jamaican Owl


copyright: MilanHin


Although this species may have a small range, it is not believed to 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.
The Jamaican Owl is a unique owl endemic to the island of Jamaica and is the only species in the genus Pseudoscops. Despite its small range, the Jamaican Owl’s population is believed to be stable and consequently has not been placed on any threatened species lists, but more work needs to be done on this species’ population biology.
Jamaican Owl status Least Concern



Distribution map

Jamaican Owl distribution range map

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