Rare northern boobook seen at Bukit Batok HDB flat will stare into your soul


Ashley Tan | March 28, 2024, 02:42 PM



While working in his home, one man in Singapore was recently confronted with a piercing gaze — not that of a human, but a bird.

On Mar. 25, Jonathon Lam was working at his dining table in his home at Bukit Batok, when an owl landed outside his window.

Here's a picture he snapped of the owl with its thousand-yard stare.

Photo courtesy of Jonathon Lam

Lam told Mothership that the bird remained in place for about 20 minutes, before someone scared it off.

While the bird's large yellow gaze didn't catch him off guard, Lam shared that he feared more for his green finch hanging in his cage outside.

Northern boobook

The bird Lam saw is a northern boobook, which is actually a rare migrant to Singapore.

This species of owl is endemic to eastern and southern countries in Asia, which means it cannot be found in any other parts of the world.

The northern boobook is similar in appearance to the brown boobook, an uncommon resident in Singapore.

The two can be distinguished by the shape of the brown streaks on their chests and underparts — the former has longer brown streaks, while the latter has brown heart-shaped streaks.

Photo courtesy of Jonathon Lam

Photo courtesy of Jonathon Lam

Top photo courtesy of Jonathon Lam