Powerful Owl (Ninox strenua)

Who am I?

I'm one of the biggest owls around. I can reach up to 60 centimetres tall with a wingspan that can stretch out to nearly 120 centimetres. My appearance might seem a bit intimidating to some, with my big round head, piercing yellow eyes and sharp talons. I am rarely seen as I move swiftly through the night to swoop down on prey, such as possums, gliders and other small animals.

Where can you find me?
I can mostly be found in South-Eastern Australia, from the Central Queensland coast down to South-Western Victoria. I like to hang out in the forests and woodlands, where there's plenty of trees for me to perch on and hunt from. If you’re lucky enough to spot me during the daytime, I’ll likely be perched in a tall Eucalyptus tree, hidden as best I can while I let the daylight pass.
Why am I threatened?

One of my biggest challenges is habitat loss and fragmentation from human activities like deforestation, urbanisation, and land clearing for agriculture. When my forest habitat is destroyed or broken up into smaller patches, it becomes harder for me to find suitable hunting grounds and places to nest.

Another issue is the depletion of my prey species. When humans remove and disturb animals that I rely on for food, it disrupts the balance of the ecosystem and can make it more difficult for me to find enough food.

How can you help?

There are several ways that you can help me survive and thrive in the wild.

Conserving and safeguarding the forests and woodlands where I live is the most crucial way. This means preventing deforestation, limiting urban sprawl into natural areas, and creating protected areas where we can flourish undisturbed.

Leave me in peace! Minimizing disturbances in my habitat, such as keeping noise levels down and avoiding excessive human presence, can help me feel more comfortable and secure in my environment.

Get involved now!

If you have seen a Powerful Owl, please report the sighting HERE

If you have or know of a suitable property for creating corridors or protecting remnant forest, please contact us HERE

If you want to join our Landcare group and get involved with on-ground works such as planting, weeding and educational activities, sign up HERE

Project link: Western Port Woodlands

Thank you for contributing to protecting a local threatened species!


Victorian Conservation Status: Vulnerable

Key Ecological Vegetation Classes (EVCs): Lowland Forest, Damp Forest, Wet Forest, Damp Sands Herb-rich Woodland, Damp Heathy Woodland, Herb-rich Foothill Forest

Key Flora Species: Blackwood (Acacia melanoxylon).

Photo top with thanks to Sharon Co Images via Unsplash, middle (Lowland Forest) Nicky Baird, bottom by Dave Newman.