Collared Owlet Glaucidium brodiei


Justification of Red List category
This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Population justification
Described as common throughout its range (König and Weick 2008). No density estimates are available for this species (or any of its Asian congeners) and so a population size has not been estimated. Given the size of its vast range however, it is not considered likely to approach the thresholds (<10,000 mature individuals) for listing as threatened.

Trend justification
Forest loss in this species's range has been equal to c.8% over the last 10 years (Global Forest Watch 2021), and this rate is expected to continue. However, this species is very tolerant of degradation and occurs even in cultivated areas (albeit perhaps at lower densities [König and Weick 2008]) and so while the species is suspected to be declining, it is probably doing so at a slow rate.

Distribution and population

Widespread through South-East Asia. Comprises two subspecies: nominate from north-east Afghanistan (where perhaps no longer extant), Pakistan, through north India, Nepal, and Bhutan. Status in Bangladesh uncertain. Occurs throughout south-east mainland China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia south to Peninsular Malaysia. Subspecies pardalotum occurs in Taiwan, China.


Inhabits montane and submontane forest, open forest edge, drier woodland and more open scrub habitats, mostly at 1350-2750 m (König and Weick 2008), but occasionally up to 2,900 m (Rasmussen and Anderton 2012) and as low as c.700 m in China (MacKinnon and Phillipps 2000). On the Thai-Malay Peninsula, occurs only to 1,800 m (Wells 1999). Active and vocal during the day (and also at night), this species occurs in the canopy, feeding on insects and small birds (König and Weick 2008).


Some local-scale hunting and trade has been noted (Liang et al. 2013) although this is considered unlikely to be causing declines. Forest loss and degradation is ongoing throughout its range at a slow (c.5% forest loss over three generations) rate (Global Forest Watch 2021). However, this species is tolerant of considerable degradation and inhabits (albeit perhaps at a lower density) wooded agricultural areas and secondary forest (König and Weick 2008).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
Occurs in numerous protected areas.

Conservation Actions Proposed  

Continue to monitor habitat loss using remote sensing data. Research densities in different habitat types to establish whether habitat degradation is likely to be causing considerable declines. 


15-17 cm. Small, rotund owl. Speckled crown, streaked belly, buff-barred upperparts, white-and-black immitation of a face on the nape. Voice A distinctive, soft, even-pitched iteration of four notes: "toottoot-toottoot".


Text account compilers
Berryman, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Species factsheet: Glaucidium brodiei. Downloaded from on 02/03/2024.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2024) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 02/03/2024.