LAUGHING OWL: EXTINCT 1914

laughing owl, extinct, new zealand, design squish blog

The Laughing Owl (Sceloglaux albifacies), also known as WhÄ“kau or the White-faced Owl, was an endemic owl found in New Zealand, but is now extinct. It was plentiful when European settlers arrived in New Zealand in 1840.  By 1880, the species was becoming rare, and the last recorded specimen was found dead at Bluecliffs Station in Canterbury, New Zealand on July 5, 1914

laughing owl

laughing owl, birds of new zealand, design squish blog

laughing owl, birds of new zealand, design squish blog

The Laughing Owl generally occupied rocky, low rainfall areas. Being quite large, Laughing Owls were able to deal with the introduced European rats that had caused the extinction of so much of their prey; however, the stoats introduced to control feral rabbits, and feral cats were too much for the species.


January 31, 2011