Strange transforming Owl takes on different forms (Video)
2010-07-10 0:00


Video from:

"The owl is a White-faced Scops Owl (about 20cm in height, noted for its orange eyes, small owl), named Popo.

When Popo is shown a Barn Owl (or Ashy-faced Owl) (found in many parts of the world, about 35cm in height), Popo puffs out his feathers against the other owl since the Barn Owl is, according to Popo, of lower rank.

When faced with a Eurasian Eagle-Owl (found in the African continent, about 75cm in height, large owl), Popo slims down to half his size and narrows his eyes to look like a tree branch in the eyes of the Eurasian Eagle-Owl. Since Popos stomach feathers are a non-camouflaging white color, he keeps twisting his body so that his back is always facing the enemy owl.

Owls have thick feathers and their actual bodies are not that big, so they can change sizes by puffing or flattening their feathers. The White-faced Scops Owl is among the most adept in controlling their feathers."

The Southern White-faced Owl (Ptilopsis granti) is a fairly small owl in the family Strigidae. It is native to the southern half of Africa. It was formerly regarded as a subspecies of the Northern White-faced Owl (P. leucopsis) but the two are now commonly treated as separate species.

It is 22-28 centimetres long and weighs 185-220 grams. The upperparts are grey with dark streaks and there are white spots on the scapular feathers. The underparts are whitish with dark streaks. The face is white with a black border and black around the large orange eyes. The head has two short "ear" tufts with black tips. Juvenile birds have a greyish face. The Northern White-faced Owl is usually paler and browner with reduced streaking below.

The call is a series of fast, bubbling hoots. It is uttered at night and frequently repeated. The Northern White-faced Owl has a very different two-note call.

Its range extends from Gabon eastwards to southern Kenya and southwards to Namibia and northern South Africa. It inhabits savanna and dry woodland. It is usually seen alone or in pairs. It hunts for large invertebrates and some small mammals, birds and reptiles are also taken.
The eggs are usually laid in the old nest of another bird. The clutch contains two or three eggs which are incubated for about 30 days. The young birds leave the nest about a month after hatching.

The owl has the magnificent ability to morph its appearance in times of danger or threat. It may enlarge its body to ward off other owls, or it may make itself appear shrivelled to camouflage its self as a tree trunk or branch.

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