Caprimulgus strigoides Latham, 1801, New Holland. Three subspecies.
OTHER COMMON NAMES
English: Morepork, freckled or tawny-shouldered frogmouth; French: Podarge gris; German: Eulenschwalm; Spanish: Podargo Australiano.
13.5–21 in (34–53 cm); 6–24 oz (180–670 g). Male’s upperparts are normally grayish with bold black streaks and intricate finer bars and lines; underparts are lighter grayish with blackish streaks, white barring, and variable brown to rufous suffusion. Female often darker with more rufous suffusion.
Australia and Tasmania.
Woodland, scrub, tree groves, plantations, gardens with trees.
Daytime roosts are on tree branches; active at night in territory defended by pair of birds.
FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET
Feeds mainly by sallying from perch to take large insects, other arthropods, or small vertebrates from ground.
Nest a platform in tree or bush, usually containing clutch of one to three eggs. Daytime incubation by male, incubation period about 30 days. Young fed by both parents, fledging period 25–35 days.
SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS
Nocturnal calls familiar to rural Australians, but much confused in past with those of owls.
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