As I suspected, the distinctive shape of the skull makes this specimen easily recognisable as an owl (family Strigiformes). However, there are a couple of hundred species of owl, so there were plenty of possibilities to make a more specific identification.
This specimen has quite a distinctive slope to the forehead in profile view and a very clear groove down the midline of the cranium, which combined with the length of around 58mm narrowed down the likely suspects considerably.
Jake was the first to suggest the species I think it’s most likely to be, with palaeosam suggesting the other possible option and RH cautiously suggesting both. This skull belongs to an owl in the genus Continue reading →