IUCN status
Least Concern
Scientific name
Pulsatrix perspicillata
Central and South America
 Tropical rainforest and open woodland

Spectacled owl facts

  • Hunting at night, they watch from a branch with their keen eyesight, then drop silently on to their prey with a swift pounce.
  • Spectacle owls ring of light feathers around their eyes gives them their name. Juvenile spectacled owls have an inverse white colour pattern to the black adult owls. 
  • Spectacled owls are the largest rainforest species of owl in South America. 
Spectacled owl in a tree
Juvenile spectacled owl flying

What do spectacled owls eat? 

Small mammals, birds, frogs, reptiles, insects and crabs.

Where do spectacled owls eat?

Central and South America.

Spectacled owl threats

Spectacled owls are expected to lose around 20% of their rainforest habitat over the next three generations, around 17 years. This habitat loss is expected to cause a decline in their population of around 25%.

South American wildlife

Choloepus didactylus

Linne's two-toed sloth

A sloths’ internal organs, such as the heart, spleen, and liver are all arranged to accommodate living upside-down. 

Tamandua tetradactyla


Tamanduas are a small species of anteater, which have massive tongues growing up to 40cm in length.

Saimiri boliviensis

Squirrel monkeys

Squirrel monkeys have the largest brain, proportionally, of all primates.