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Photo by Peter Ericsson
Rangsit, Bangkok, Thailand, April 2003
Otus sunia


18–21 cm (7-8¼ in)
Two colour morphs: grey-brown and rufous


Asia: Russia, Siberia, Mongolia, China, Nepal, Pakistan, India, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Eastern and Western Himalayas, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Bhutan, North Korea, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan
Southeast Asia: Indochina, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, Malay Peninsula, Singapore, Borneo, Indonesia, Greater Sundas, Sumatra

Accidental vagrant to the Aleutians in Alaska (1 record).



Greyish morph
Photo by SeeToh
Dairy Farm Nature Park, Singapore, January 2017

There are 9 subspecies[1]:

  • O. s. sunia:
  • O. s. rufipennis:
  • Southern India
  • O. s. leggei:
  • O. s. nicobaricus:
  • O. s. japonicus:
  • Breeds Japan, at least partially migratory, but winter range not well documented
  • O. s. stictonotus:
  • Breeds south-eastern Siberia to north-eastern China, Sakhalin Island and northern Korea; winters south-eastern China south at least to southern Thailand
  • O. s. malayanus:
  • Southern China (Yunnan to eastern Guangdong); at least partially migratory, wintering to the southern Malay Peninsula and perhaps to northern Sumatra
  • O. s. distans:
  • O. s. modestus:


Dry deciduous forests, with a preference for the edges and glades of open woodland.



Their main diet consists of insects and spiders. They also eat rodents and small birds.


Their nest is a hollow in a tree trunk.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2016. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2016, with updates to August 2016. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Avibase
  3. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved January 2017)

Recommended Citation

External Links

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