Asio otus 


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Aves Strigiformes Strigidae

Scientific Name: Asio otus
Species Authority: (Linnaeus, 1758)
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Northern Long-eared Owl
Taxonomic Source(s): 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. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International.
Taxonomic Notes: Asio otus and A. abyssinicus (Sibley and Monroe 1990, 1993) are retained as separate species contra Cramp (1985) and Dowsett and Forbes-Watson (1993) who include abyssinicus as a subspecies of A. otus.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2015
Date Assessed: 2012-05-03
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Ekstrom, J., Butchart, S. & Ashpole, J
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 is extremely large, and hence does not 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.
Previously published Red List assessments:
2012 Least Concern (LC)
2009 Least Concern (LC)
2008 Least Concern (LC)
2004 Least Concern (LC)
2000 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1994 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)
1988 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Countries occurrence:
Afghanistan; Albania; Algeria; Andorra; Armenia (Armenia); Austria; Azerbaijan; Belarus; Belgium; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; Canada; China; Croatia; Cyprus; Czech Republic; Denmark; Egypt; Estonia; Faroe Islands; Finland; France; Georgia; Germany; Greece; Hungary; India; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Ireland; Israel; Italy; Japan; Jordan; Kazakhstan; Korea, Democratic People's Republic of; Korea, Republic of; Kyrgyzstan; Latvia; Lebanon; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Malta; Mexico; Moldova; Mongolia; Montenegro; Morocco; Netherlands; Norway; Pakistan; Palestinian Territory, Occupied; Poland; Portugal; Romania; Russian Federation; Serbia (Serbia); Slovakia; Slovenia; Spain; Sweden; Switzerland; Syrian Arab Republic; Taiwan, Province of China; Tajikistan; Tunisia; Turkey; Turkmenistan; Ukraine; United Arab Emirates; United Kingdom; United States (Georgia); Uzbekistan
Bermuda; Bhutan; Cuba; Gibraltar; Hong Kong; Iceland; Kuwait; Lao People's Democratic Republic; Myanmar; Nepal; Oman; Qatar; Saint Pierre and Miquelon; Saudi Arabia; Svalbard and Jan Mayen
Continuing decline in area of occupancy (AOO): Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in area of occupancy (AOO): No
Estimated extent of occurrence (EOO) - km2: 28400000
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO): Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in extent of occurrence (EOO): No
Continuing decline in number of locations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in the number of locations: No
Upper elevation limit (metres): 2750
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Partners in Flight Science Committee (2013) estimated the global population to number 50,000 individuals. The European population is estimated at 304,000-776,000 pairs, which equates to 609,000-1,550,000 mature individuals (BirdLife International 2015). Europe forms approximately 28% of the global range, so a very preliminary estimate of the global population size is 2,180,000-5,540,000 mature individuals, although further validation of this estimate is needed.

Trend Justification:  This species has undergone a small or statistically insignificant decrease over the last 40 years in North America (data from Breeding Bird Survey and/or Christmas Bird Count: Butcher and Niven 2007). In Europe the population size trend is unknown (BirdLife International 2015).
Current Population Trend: Decreasing
Additional data:
Number of mature individuals: 2000000-5500000 Continuing decline of mature individuals: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations: No Population severely fragmented: No
Continuing decline in subpopulations: Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations: No All individuals in one subpopulation: No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): Declines in Britain are thought to be due to the expanding population of Tawny Owl (Strix aluco), competing for space, food and nest sites (Hagemeijer and Blair 1997, Olsen 1999). Agricultural intensification and declining vole populations are also driving declines in Europe (Hagemeijer and Blair 1997, Aschwanden et al. 2005). Locally, threats include pesticide use, persecution and road traffic collisions (König and Weick 2008). Loss of riparian, grassland and other open habitats to development is considered a threat in the U.S.A. (Olsen 1999).

Citation: BirdLife International. 2015. Asio otus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2015: e.T22689507A80590631. . Downloaded on 01 December 2015.
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