Friday, January 6, 2012
Unusual Feeding Behavior by Norfolk Island Boobooks Owl
The population of the Norfolk Island Boobook had been reduced to just one female until she bred successfully with two male Boobooks introduced from New Zealand. National park manager Coral Rowston reports that the population is now about 40.
Queensland's Sunshine Coast is emerging as one of the best parts of Australia to see many rare and difficult-to-find birds and other animals.
From Wikipedia, click on read more
The bird has almost 20 alternative common names, most of which – including Mopoke, Morepork, Ruru and Boobook – are onomatopoeic, as they emulate the bird's distinctive two-pitched call.
Two subspecies, the Lord Howe Boobook and the Norfolk Island Boobook both became extinct during the 20th century.
It occurs in most habitats with trees, ranging from deep tropical forests to isolated stands at the edges of arid zones, farmland, or alpine grasslands, but is most common in temperate woodland. They are usually seen singly, in pairs, or in small family groups of an adult pair and up to three young.
Although mainly nocturnal, they are sometimes active at dawn and dusk. The main hunting times are evenings and mornings, with brief bursts of activity through the night. On dark nights they often perch through the middle hours and, particularly if the weather is bad, may hunt by daylight instead.
Although their main hunting technique is perch-and-pounce, they are agile birds with a swift, goshawk-like wing action and the ability to manoeuvre rapidly when pursuing prey or hawking for insects. Almost any suitably sized prey is taken, particularly small birds, mammals and large insects such as moths, grasshoppers and, in New Zealand, wetas.
During the day, moreporks sleep in roosts. By night they hunt a variety of animals – mainly large invertebrates including scarab and huhu beetles, moths and caterpillars, wētā and spiders. They also take small birds, rats and mice.