|Conservation status||Least concern|
Black-banded owls are between 11 and 16 inches in length, with a wingspan of up to 24 inches. The back, head, and facial disk are predominantly black or brownish-black in color, the remainder of the body a mix of black and white bands from which the owl gets its name.
- Strix huhula albomarginata
- Strix huhula huhula
Black-banded owls are entirely nocturnal, becoming active at dusk to hunt for insects, their main prey. Occasionally, they may take small mammals and reptiles. During the day they select a well-hidden spot within the trees to roost.
Black-banded owls are found east of the Andes Mountains in South America, from Venezuela and the Guianas in the north to Argentina and Paraguay in the south. Predominately found in tropical forests, they have been spotted within montane forests on the Andean lower slopes in Argentina.
Black-banded owls are one of four species formerly of the genus Ciccaba; genetics suggested a closer relationship to birds of the genus Strix than was previously believed, resulting in a change of classification. Some authorities, such as the IUCN, still refer to these birds under the former genus classification.