The jungle owlet, or barred jungle owlet, scientific name Glaucidium Radiatum, is found in the Indian Subcontinent. The species is often found singly, in pairs or small groups and are usually detected by their calls at dawn and dusk.
There are two subspecies with the form found in the Western Ghats sometimes considered a full species. The bird, jungle owlet has round head and fine barring all over the body. The head, back and wings are brownish gray with white barring.
Origin, Geographical Range and Distribution
These bird species are distributed in India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Myanmar. In India, these owlet species are distributed in the states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Goa, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Odisha, West Bengal, Assam, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Rajasthan.
Ecosystem and Habitat
These jungle-owlet species have moderate forest dependence. They normally occur in altitudes from 0 to 2000 meters. The artificial ecosystems of these species include agricultural fields, rural gardens and plantations.
The natural ecosystems and habitats of these jungle-owlet species include, tropical and subtropical dry forests, secondary forests, dry shrub lands, moist shrub lands, dry grasslands, deciduous forests, scrub forests, wetlands and river in habitats.
Diet and Feeding Behavior
The diet of these jungle-owlet consists mainly of insects. Small rodents, insects, locusts, grasshoppers, cicadas, lizards, snakes, frogs, bird eggs and nestlings are their primary food.
These owlets are mostly crepuscular, being active mainly at dawn and dusk. The peak foraging time is an hour before sunrise and an hour after sunset. Occasionally they hunt during the day.
Reproduction and Breeding Habits
The breeding season of the jungle owlet species is from March to May in India. In Nepal the breeding season is from March to June. Their nesting sites are tree cavities. These birds are monogamous and territorial.
The nest is an unlined tree hollow. The nest may be located as high as six meters above the ground. The typical clutch contains 2-4 eggs. Both the parents incubate the eggs and take care of hatch lings.
Migration and Movement Patterns
These jungle owlet species are non-migratory resident birds. The birds in higher altitudes may move to lower levels during winter.
Post breeding, the juvenile owlets may disperse and establish in new locations within the range. They may make local movements for feeding and breeding within their range.