|Vermiculated screech owl|
|Megascops guatemalae vermiculatus|
The vermiculated screech owl (Megascops vermiculatus), is a species of owl in the family Strigidae. The taxonomy of this species and the Middle American screech owl can be confusing. When split, the name vermiculated screech owl (M. vermiculatus) is used for the population from eastern Nicaragua to Panama. When conspecific, the English name vermiculated screech owl is used, but M. guatemalae is used for the scientific name since it is older. Some taxonomists usually also include the “guatemalae” larger conspecific group with the foothill screech owl, M. roraimae and the Choco screech owl, M. centralis. Many authorities, including the American Ornithological Society, continue to call these species and M. guatemalae conspecific, while others, including the International Ornithologists’ Union split them.
Based on voices all in Panama appear to be M. centralis (with its short-trilled song), while populations in Costa Rica appear to be divided between M. centralis and M. guatemalae (with its long-trilled song).