Lesser Sooty Owl

Sounds & Calls

Yellow-tailed Black-Cockatoo (Calyptorhynchus funereus)

Lesser Sooty Owl (Tyto multipunctata)

The Lesser Sooty Owl (Tyto multipunctata) is a medium-sized owl endemic to the wet tropics of far north Queensland, Australia. Once considered a subspecies of the Greater Sooty Owl (Tyto tenebricosa), the Lesser Sooty Owl is smaller and daintier than its larger cousin.

Lesser Sooty Owls inhabit rainforests and eucalypt forests from sea-level up to the above 1000m on the Atherton Tablelands and are not uncommon in suitable habitat within their limited range.

Lesser Sooty Owls are quite vocal, perhaps more so than their larger cousin, the Greater Sooty Owl (Tyto tenebricosa). They can often be heard calling just after dusk or before dawn. Their calls are very similar to those of Tyto tenebricosa – the most commonly heard calls are a descending screech (which can sound like a whistle from a distance) and a harsh scraping call.

Listen to Lesser Sooty Owl Sounds

The following video contains a spectrogram visualization of a compilation of some of the audio recordings published below.


Lesser Sooty Owl – Screech & Trills

 XC352821 This first recording features a typical descending screech followed by some wavering trills. Recorded at dawn in Tully Falls National Park, Queensland.


Lesser Sooty Owl – Harsh screams

 XC174110 This next sample features a series of harsh screaming calls. Recorded at dawn in Mount Lewis National Park, Queensland.

Lesser Sooty Owl (Tyto multipunctata)