Desert Tawny Owl Strix hadorami


Taxonomic note
Strix butleri was previously listed as S. omanensis in del Hoyo and Collar 2014 based on the description under this name by Robb et al. (2013). Strix hadorami (Kirwan, Schweizer & Copete, 2015) was previously listed as S. butleri in del Hoyo and Collar (2014) and before.

Recent genetic and morphological analyses have revealed that the type specimen of S. butleri—the geographical provenance of which is open to doubt—differs significantly from all other specimens previously ascribed to this species, indicating (despite the lack of vocal data definitively linked to the same population as the type) that two species are involved, principally because the degree of molecular differentiation is close to that in other taxa of Strix traditionally recognised as species, which led to populations of this species from southern Oman to the Levant and eastern Egypt, which share the same morphology and vocalizations, being described as a separate species, Desert Tawny Owl (S. hadorami).

Taxonomic source(s)
AERC TAC. 2003. AERC TAC Checklist of bird taxa occurring in Western Palearctic region, 15th Draft. Available at: # _the_WP15.xls#.
Cramp, S. and Simmons, K.E.L. (eds). 1977-1994. Handbook of the birds of Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The birds of the western Palearctic. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A. and Fishpool, L.D.C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 1: Non-passerines. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.

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

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2016 Least Concern
2012 Least Concern
2009 Least Concern
2008 Least Concern
2004 Least Concern
2000 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1994 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1988 Lower Risk/Least Concern
Species attributes

Migratory status not a migrant Forest dependency does not normally occur in forest
Land-mass type Average mass -

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence (breeding/resident) 2,700,000 km2
Severely fragmented? no -
Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
Population size unknown - - -
Population trend stable - suspected -
Generation length 9.6 years - - -

Population justification: The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is reported to be relatively common (del Hoyo et al. 1999).

Trend justification: The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Presence Origin Resident Breeding visitor Non-breeding visitor Passage migrant
Egypt extant native yes
Israel extant native yes
Jordan extant native yes
Oman extant native yes
Pakistan extant uncertain
Palestine extant native yes
Saudi Arabia extant native yes
Yemen extant native yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Egypt Nabq Protected Area
Egypt Gebel Elba
Egypt The Abraq area
Egypt St Katherine Protectorate
Egypt Gebel Maghara
Egypt Quseima
Egypt Wadi Gerafi
Israel Judean desert
Israel Northern Arava valley
Israel Cliffs of Zin and the Negev highlands
Israel Southern Arava valley and Elat mountains
Jordan Wadi Mujib
Jordan Dana
Jordan Petra
Jordan Aqaba coast and mountains
Palestine Jerusalem wilderness
Saudi Arabia Harrat al-Harrah
Saudi Arabia Shallal ad-Dahna
Saudi Arabia Wadi Jawwah
Saudi Arabia Jabal al-Lawz
Saudi Arabia Jabal Aja and Northern Ha'il
Yemen Kawkaban - Shibam
Jordan Hisma Basin - Rum
Yemen Hawf deciduous cloud forest

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Plantations suitable resident
Artificial/Terrestrial Urban Areas marginal resident
Desert Hot major resident
Savanna Dry major resident
Altitude 0 - 3000 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Pets/display animals, horticulture - - international non-trivial recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Species factsheet: Strix hadorami. Downloaded from on 24/02/2024.
Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2024) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 24/02/2024.