Taiwan owls?

I was at the park late at night with my dog a couple of weeks ago.

I heard a bird that sounded like an owl.

Has anyone seen any owls here?

Collared Owlet

Collared Owl

Spotted Scops Owl

May have been one of these

Yeah, a fairly big one too. He/she had to be about 10 inches tall. I could tell because I was looking at it from about 3 feet away. This was about a year back at the Shihlin Courthouse. The classroom is up on the 4th floor and there are some trees surrounding the building. And as luck would have it the Courthouse Owl was in a tree directly outside the windown of the classroom.

All during class (which was over the long lunch hour) people who were not in the class nonetheless “snuck in” to check out the owl including a number of prosecutors who had to have a photo of it.

My brother got hit in the chest by an owl while on his motorbike…knocked him clear off the bike.

Aren’t they cool? The little scops owls are fairly common here and often let you get pretty close, but there are probably a dozen or species found here. I’ll check my bird book tonight.

I hear one most nights when I walk around the university ring-road in Muzha. Haven’t seen him yet but he’s always in the same area.

Formosan mountain scops owl

Lanyu (Orchid) Island

What gorgeous creatures.

Sandman. Did you say you have a book about birds in Taiwan?

If so where did you get it and how much was it?

I did and I do. I put a pic of the cover on Forumosa some time ago but can’t find it anymore. It wasn’t expensive and it’s very useful indeed. It’s a small field guide with colour plates of the birds, distribution maps for each one, Chinese name, Linnean name, English name and a brief description in Chinese. You can get it at Eslite or someplace like that, I’m sure.

I saw one in the park about 8 months ago. It was perched on a wire. I watched it, and it watched me for about 5 minutes. Very cool indeed. Seeing a bird like that in a fairly urban area gave me hope. Maybe we haven’t screwed things up too badly…yet… But then again, if it likes to eat rodents and whatnot, maybe it should be hanging 'round the night market. :smiley:

I was on an island in the North of Malaysia eating dinner a few years back. I was eating at a picnic table under a tree. All of a sudden my friend had a really shocked expression on his face as he looked up in the tree.

I look up and there was a huge owl perched on a branch just a few meters from us just staring at us. This thing was maybe 60cm tall. Gorgeous animal. It actually scared the hell out of me cause I didn’t know it was there.

I really want to see one here. Time for a trip to Lanyu (Orchid island).

I was driving down from Yangmingshan last week. I don’t remember exactly where, but there was a sign that said, “Owl crossing”. I thought it was a little strange.

I saw an “Owl crossing” sign going up Yangmingshan. I asked my Taiwanese friends who were in the car with me what it meant, but they just laughed and shrugged.

There is a scops owl on the backroad to our community. Most of the time it just sits in the middle of the road–waiting for mice and snakes, I think. If you drive real slow with your headlights on dim you can get real close–about 20 feet–before it flies off. Sometimes it waits on the dried branc of a tree close to the road–very cool.

I found one of these little guys sitting on the middle of the road one night just on the Dazhi side of the tunnel in Dazhi. He didn’t fly away as I passed him on my bike so I assumed that he had been hit by a car. It was the middle of winter and I was pretty heavily rugged up with gloves etc which was lucky. I picked him up and his talons pierced straight through my gloves and embedded themselves in my fingers. I managed to get one hand free and rode the rest of the way home with this owl stuck to my hand and tucked inside my jacket to keep him warm. Every bump we hit his tallons clenched tighter and the tips of his claws further entered my flesh, and all the time I was hoping that he wouldn’t do a ‘Jackass’ on me and clamp onto my nipple. :astonished:

I got home, prised him off my now bleeding hand, and placed him and my glove into a box. He survived the night so I called the zoo the next day to ask what to do with him and they said that they didn’t want him. That night after I returned home from work I closed the windows and doors on my verandah and opened up the box to see if he could fly. No problems at all. So I opened the window and out he went. Lucky fella!

When I originally stopped to pick him up I had assumed that he was a young one as he wasn’t very large. It is obvious to me now that he was fully grown and that they are just a small sized owl species.

[quote=“Lo Bo To”]Sandman. Did you say you have a book about birds in Taiwan?

If so where did you get it and how much was it?

Maybe not the same book, but I just got one published by the Wild Bird Society of Taipei - www.wbst.org.tw

This is a small paperback book, newly published in English. Similar in description to the one that Sandman has (actually based on a Chinese version that came out in 2002). In addition to the 100 birds most common here (one owl), it lists the 15 birds that are endemic (no owls).

Cost was NT $200. Friend picked it up for me, so I’m not sure of the store location, but that link above might help or the phone number from the receipt (02-2325-5084).



Sample entry for one bird: