Pacific Screech-owl Megascops cooperi


Taxonomic note
The form lambi was reassigned to Megascops asio from M. cooperi in del Hoyo and Collar (2014), however the claimed sympatry of lambi and M. cooperi (König et al. 2008) is not clear (T.S. Schulenberg in litt. 2019) and lambi is reassigned back to M. cooperi.

Taxonomic source(s)
del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A., Fishpool, L.D.C., Boesman, P. and Kirwan, G.M. 2016. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 2: Passerines. Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.
Handbook of the Birds of the World and BirdLife International. 2019. Handbook of the Birds of the World and BirdLife International digital checklist of the birds of the world. Version 4. Available at:

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 Medium
Land mass type Average mass -
Extent of occurrence (EOO)

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 309,000 medium
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -
Population and trend
Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals 50000-499999 poor estimated 2017
Population trend Decreasing inferred -
Decline (3 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (5 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation future) 1-9 - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation past and future) 1-9 - - -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Largest subpopulations - - -
Generation length (yrs) 7 - - -

Population justification: Partners in Flight estimated the population to number 50,000-499,999 mature individuals (A. Panjabi in litt. 2017).

Trend justification:

The species has undergone a small or non-significant decline between 1970 and 2014 (A. Panjabi in litt. 2017). A remote-sensing study found that forest loss within its range over the last three generations was potentially 6% (Tracewski et al. 2016); thus the species may have declined by <10% over the last three generations.

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Costa Rica N Extant Yes
El Salvador N Extant Yes
Guatemala N Extant Yes
Honduras N Extant Yes
Mexico N Extant Yes
Nicaragua N Extant Yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Mexico Tancítaro
Mexico La Sepultura
Mexico La Encrucijada
Mexico Laguna Pampa El Cabildo
Guatemala Manchón - Guamuchal
Guatemala Monterrico - Río La Paz
Costa Rica Guanacaste lowlands
Costa Rica Nicoya Peninsula
Nicaragua Cosiguina Volcano
Nicaragua Estero Real Delta and Apacunca Plains
Nicaragua Chocoyero - El Brujo - Montibelli and adjacent landscape
Nicaragua Mombacho Volcano
Nicaragua Maderas Volcano
Nicaragua Quirragua Mountains and adjacent landscape
El Salvador Jucuarán Hills
El Salvador The Volcans and San Marcelino
El Salvador Conchagua Volcano
El Salvador El Imposible Forest
El Salvador San Diego and La Barra
El Salvador Cerrón Grande
El Salvador Cinquera Forest
El Salvador San Miguel Volcano/El Jocotal Lagoon
El Salvador Jiquilisco and Jaltepeque
El Salvador La Joya
El Salvador Lake Olomega
El Salvador La Unión Bay
El Salvador Los Cóbanos
El Salvador Barra de Santiago

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Subtropical/Tropical Heavily Degraded Former Forest suitable resident
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Dry major resident
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Mangrove Vegetation Above High Tide Level suitable resident
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland suitable resident
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Swamp suitable resident
Altitude 0 - 950 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact
Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Biological resource use Logging & wood harvesting - Motivation Unknown/Unrecorded Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Unknown Negligible declines Unknown
Ecosystem degradation

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Species factsheet: Megascops cooperi. Downloaded from on 05/07/2020. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2020) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 05/07/2020.