Eagle Owl

Eagle Owl


Appearance

The Giant Eagle Owl is the largest owl in the world. As the biggest of all the Owls the Eagle owl is easily recognised by its huge size and wingspan. They are light grey in colour, finely bared blackish above and below but no heavy blotching. The face is pale, boldly outlined in black, eyes look black at a distance and they have distinctive pink eyelids, which makes them very identifiable. Very similar to a huge Long Eared owl. The Eagle Owl is a pale sand colour underneath with streaks of dark Brown or grey. Greyish head with a large powerful beak and large orange or yellow eyes and two ear tufts extending from over the eyes. They have huge powerful feet and talons.

Diet

It feeds largely on game birds such as Guinea fowl and small mammals like scrub hares are a favourite. They are usually seen at dawn or dusk and asides from their large size are easily recognised by their pink upper eyelids. They have a very varied diet recorded killing mammals the size of Vervet Monkeys and birds like Secretary birds, but they feed mainly on hedgehogs when available.

Breeding

They will breed from the months of March to September, two eggs are usually laid and both parents incubate for up to 39 days.

Behaviour

They are usually found alone or in pairs and mainly from Kwazulu-Natal Northwards. They will be found living in tree lining drainage lines and watercourses. Their call is a deep gruff hooting call hryu hryu hooo. They rarely hunt by day and roosts in larger trees, preferably in the shade.

Habitat

Woodland, savanna and tree lined watercourses.

Where they are found

They are found in Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Mozambique and northern South Africa.



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