Cyprus Scops-owl Otus cyprius


Taxonomic note
Otus scops has been split into Eurasian Scops-owl O. scops and Cyprus Scops-owl O. cyprius on the basis on significant vocal differences and minor plumage characteristics following a detailed review by Flint et al. 2015).

IUCN Red List criteria met and history
Red List criteria met
Critically Endangered Endangered Vulnerable
- - -

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2019 Least Concern
Species attributes

Migratory status not a migrant Forest dependency unset
Land-mass type Average mass -

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence (breeding/resident) 14,400 km2
Severely fragmented? no -
Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
Population size 10000-24000 mature individuals medium estimated 2012
Population trend unknown - - -
Generation length 3.7 years - - -

Population justification: The breeding population is estimated at 5,000-12,000 pairs, which equates to 10,000-24,000 mature individuals (BirdLife International 2015). This is roughly equivalent to 15,000-36,000 individuals in total.

Trend justification: The population trend direction is unknown (BirdLife International 2015).

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Presence Origin Resident Breeding visitor Non-breeding visitor Passage migrant
Cyprus extant native yes
Israel extant vagrant

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Cyprus Pafos Forest
Cyprus Akamas and Agia Aikaterini – Agia Paraskevi Gorges
Cyprus Karpasia Peninsula - Kleides Islands
Cyprus Mahairas Forest - Tzionia
Cyprus Pentadaktylos Mountains

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Arable Land suitable resident
Artificial/Terrestrial Rural Gardens suitable resident
Forest Temperate major resident
Shrubland Mediterranean-type Shrubby Vegetation major resident
Altitude 0 - 1900 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact
Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Agriculture & aquaculture Annual & perennial non-timber crops - Scale Unknown/Unrecorded Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Medium Impact: 6
Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Species factsheet: Otus cyprius. Downloaded from on 30/11/2023.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2023) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 30/11/2023.