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Southern Boobook - Aboriginal information

(Ninox novaeseelandiae)
Alternative names: "Boobook Owl", "Cuckoo Owl", "Spotted Owl" "Mopoke*"
Aboriginal name:
Race "lurida": "guhnggur", "gumgan"/"gumgum" [bundjalung]; "gugu" [ngadjon];
Race "ocellata": "koorkoda", "kookobort", "kookomit", "yartj" (WA)
"boobook", "mulara"

Size: 25-35 cm
Weight: 170-360 g

Back to the Southern Boobook main page .

Spiritual significance

The Southern Boobook, under the name of "Mopoke Owl", features in Aboriginal creation stories. A few examples are reproduced or listed here.

R. A. Roberts and C. P. Mountford tell the story of "The Native Cat, the Owl and the Eagle" (1968 ed.), p. 76. This story tells how the Wedge-tailed Eagle and the (Southern Boobook) Owl killed the Native-cat man, in whose place the star Betelgeuze, which is the spirit of the Cat-man, rose in the sky.

Disclaimer: Not being of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin, we make no claim of intellectual ownership of any of the information presented here. We merely collect facts and stories documented by others. Credits/references are listed HERE.

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. The structure of these bird pages is explained HERE. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.

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