Stunning pictures of the 'skunk of the sky', the tawny frogmouth

This curious-looking bird has a wide, frog-like beak and large yellow eyes to help it catch insects at night. It has bristles above its beak and mottled brown, black and white plumage which provides excellent camouflage.

At the slightest hint of danger, Tawny Frogmouths compact their feathers, stand very still and close their eyes to mimic a broken branch. They nest in trees and hunt at night. You might have a Tawny Frogmouth in your garden and not know it. Both male and female Frogmouths will incubate the eggs during breeding season (August–December).

For a start, you'd be lucky to even see one. They are experts at disguise, lying flat on a tree branch, their bark-like colouring blending them into their surroundings.

Photo: Malcolm Catchlove

Even if you're lucky enough to spot one, their eyes remain tightly closed throughout the day, for they only show any sign of life at night when they hunt.

Photo: Andrew Tingle

Photo: MegMarcinkus


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