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Buffy Fish Owl - BirdForum Opus

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Photo © by chrisli
Singapore, March 2010
Ketupa ketupu


38–44 cm (15-17¼ in); the smallest fish owl

  • Finely streaked, buffy undersides
  • Dark brown barred upper parts
  • Prominent white patch on forehead above bill
  • Bright yellow iris
  • Prominent ear-tufts


Photo © by jweeyh
Singapore, April 2016

Asia and Australasia
Southeast Asia: Indochina, Myanmar, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Malay Peninsula, Brunei, Singapore, Borneo, Indonesia, Greater Sundas, Sumatra, Java, Lesser Sundas, Bali
Australasia: Cocos (Keeling) Island


Formerly placed in the genus Bubo.


There are 4 subspecies[1]:

  • K. k. aagaardi:
  • K. k. ketupu:
  • K. k. minor:
  • Nias Island (off north-western Sumatra)
  • K. k. pageli:


Subspecies ketupu
Photo © by darwin1601
Kinabatangan River, Sabah, Borneo, Malaysia, November 2018

Forested rivers, streams and lakes also trees bordering fishponds and rice fields.


Photo © by jweeyh
Singapore, 01 January 2012


The diet consists mostly of fish, other aquatic life, small mammals, rats and mice, and birds.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Avibase
  3. Nature Watch, Singapore
  4. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved April 2016)

Recommended Citation

External Links

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