Mantanani Scops-owl Otus mantananensis


Justification of Red List Category
This species is listed as Near Threatened because there are some indications that its very small range is occupied by a moderately small, fragmented population which is undergoing a continuing decline owing to forest loss and degradation. However, little is currently known about the species's population size and structure, and the impact of threats, and its population is not regarded as severely fragmented or restricted to a few locations.

Population justification
This species is poorly known, but is common on at least some of the islands where it occurs. Overally the population is assumed to be moderately small. It is placed in the band 10,000-19,999 individuals, equating to 6,667-13,333 mature individuals, rounded here to 6,000-15,000 mature individuals.

Trend justification
The population is suspected to be in decline owing to on-going habitat destruction.

Distribution and population

Otus mantanensis is endemic to the islets off Sabah (e.g. Mantani), Malaysia, and off Palawan (e.g. Rasa, Ursula) in the Philippines, as well as to islands in the Sulu archipelago and central Philippines (BirdLife International 2001). It is apparently common in suitable habitat. The total range size is very small.


It is fairly common in coconut groves and other wooded habitats, although its total area of occupancy is small. It hunts at the forest edge or in clearings, feeding primarily on insects. Eggs are thought to be laid in March-May in a tree cavity.


It is confined to increasingly disturbed and degraded habitats within a small range. It may also be impacted on by invasive mammals (e.g. cats on Mantanani [M. Dulay in litt. 2014]).

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
None are known.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey known islands and ascertain its tolerance of habitat degradation. Assess the rate of habitat loss and area of suitable habitat remaining. Assess to what extent invasive mammals may be impacting this species and others on the islets it inhabits. Protect key sites within the range for this, and other Threatened and Near Threatened species.


Text account compilers
Butchart, S., Taylor, J., Bird, J., Westrip, J.

Dulay, M.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2019) Species factsheet: Otus mantananensis. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 21/08/2019. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2019) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 21/08/2019.