Costa Rican Pygmy-Owl Glaucidium costaricanum

  • Order: Strigiformes
  • Family: Strigidae
  • Monotypic
  • Authors: Thomas S. Schulenberg

The center of distribution of Costa Rican Pygmy-Owl is the highlands of central Costa Rica, but the range of the species extends east to western Panama. This small owl only recently was recognized as a distinct species. For many years, it was classified as a subspecies of Andean Pygmy-Owl (Glaucidium jardinii), but analysis of its vocalizations and genetic data both indicate that it is more closely related to the Northern Pygmy-Owl (Glaucidium gnoma). Costa Rican Pygmy-Owl occurs at higher elevations than the two other species of pygmy-owls in Costa Rica and Panama, Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl (Glaucidium brasilianum) and Central American Pygmy-Owl (Glaucidium griseiceps). In common with other species of pygmy-owls, this species is partially diurnal, and consumes both invertebrates and small vertebrates. Otherwise very little is known about the biology of this owl. Costa Rican Pygmy-Owl can be fairly common, and so, despite its small geographic range, it is not considered to be threatened.


© David L. Ross, Jr.

  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding

Recommended Citation

Schulenberg, T. S. (2012). Costa Rican Pygmy-Owl (Glaucidium costaricanum), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.