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The Principe Scops-Owl lives in a patch of rainforest on Principe in West Africa’s Gulf of Guinea. Researcher Martim Melo said: “A new bird species is always an occasion to celebrate. In this age of human-driven extinction, a major global effort should be undertaken to document what may soon not be.”
The owl has been given the Latin name Otus bikegila: Otus being small owls with a common history; Bikegila is the nickname of a ranger who helped confirm the bird existed by tracing its “tuu” night duet call.
The 1,500 owls are thought to be critically endangered, especially as a dam is planned locally.
The find was noted in the journal ZooKeys.
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