What bird is it?

Uploaded 8 Mar 2009 — 1 favorite
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© Jason Pepe
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Photo Info
UploadedMarch 9, 2009
TakenMarch 8, 2009
MakeNikon Corporation
ModelNIKON D200
Exposure1/250 sec at f/5.6
FlashFlash, strobe return light detected
Focal Length300 mm
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Photo license: © All rights reserved

Often mistaken for an owl, this nocturnal bird is named for its large, flat, triangular bill, which is used to catch insects. They will perch on a stump or branch and watch for tasty prey items to pass by. When prey is spotted, the bird flies down and eats it. These birds are also able to catch insects like moths while flying through the air. Unlike owls, they must capture their food with their mouth – they lack the strong talons and a sharply curved beak.

During the day, they sleep perched on a branch assuming a stick-like posture with their bills raised upward and eyes closed, and stay very still. The colors and patterns of the feathers help make them almost impossible to see.

Although not endangered or threatened, these birds are rarely seen. Often the only glimpse a human will catch of them is the bird flying after moths attracted to the headlights of cars. Unfortunately, many are killed or injured in collisions with moving vehicles every year.

Photographed at the Metro Zoo, Miami Florida Aviary.

5 responses

  • linda woods

    linda woods gave props (8 Mar 2009):

    W O W . . . . . . EEE.

  • Regenia Brabham

    Regenia Brabham (Deleted) gave props (8 Mar 2009):

    A wonderful shot!

  • Lynn H

    Lynn H (Deleted) gave props (9 Mar 2009):

    It looks like a Tawny Frogmouth. Beautiful photo!

  • Jason Pepe

    Jason Pepe said (9 Mar 2009):

    Wow........ Lynn H you know your birds!
    Yes, that's a Tawny Frogmouth.

  • Sheila

    Sheila (Deleted) gave props (1 Nov 2009):

    Great shot, gorgeous creature!

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