Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Common poorwill

Phalaenoptilus nuttallii

Photo by Don Doolittle (Debi Shearwater's Journeys)

Common name:
common poorwill (en); noitibó-de-Nuttall (pt); engoulevent de Nuttall (fr); chotacabras pachacua (es); winternachtschwalbe (de)

Taxonomy:
Order Caprimulgidae
Family Caprimulgidae

Range:
This species is found in western North America, from southern British Columbia and southern Saskatchewan in Canada, across the western United States and into north-western Mexico as far south as San Luis Potosí. The more northern population migrate south to winter along the southern parts of their range.

Size:
These birds are 18-21 cm long and weigh 35-55 g.

Habitat:
The common poorwill is found in arid and semi-arid areas, particularly in dry scrublands, but also in dry grasslands, rocky areas and hot deserts. To a lesser extent they can also use open deciduous and coniferous forests. This species is present at altitudes of 500-1.000 m.


Diet:
They hunt during the nigth taking insects on the wing, particularly beetles and moths. They also take cicadas, bugs, grasshoppers, locusts, flying ants and flies.

Breeding:
Common poorwills are monogamous and breed in March-September, varying among different parts of their range. The female lays 2 white to buff eggs, which are layed on the ground, without any type of nest structure, sometimes sheltered by a nearby rock, scrub or fallen tree. The eggs are incubated by both parents for 20-21 days. The chicks fledge 20-22 days after hatching. Each pair usually raises 2 broods per season.

Conservation:
IUCN status - LC (Least Concern)
This species has a very large breeding range and, although there are no available population estimates, the global population is believed to be large but may be somewhat fragmented. The common poorwill has undergone a small increase over the last 4 decades, possibly benefiting from human activities such as cattle grazing or logging that create open habitats.

1 comment:

  1. New Diet Taps into Innovative Plan to Help Dieters Lose 20 Pounds within Just 21 Days!

    ReplyDelete