Nacunda Nighthawk (Podager nacunda)

Nacunda Nighthawk

Nacunda Nighthawk

[order] CAPRIMULGIFORMES | [family] Caprimulgidae | [latin] Podager nacunda | [UK] Nacunda Nighthawk | [FR] Engoulevent nacunda | [DE] Weissbauch-Nachtschwalbe | [ES] Anapero nacunda | [NL] Nacunda-nachtzwaluw


Monotypic species


Physical charateristics

Upperparts buff freckled with black. Breast brown with black barring and a conspicuous white V-shaped band across the throat. Lower breast, abdomen and undetails coverts white. In flight, white belly and flanks and very distinctive white bands on the wings. The male has white tips on its tail feathers. The Bill is black and the legs grey.

Listen to the sound of Nacunda Nighthawk

[audio: Nighthawk.mp3]

Copyright remark: Most sounds derived from xeno-canto

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 27 cm size max.: 32 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 1   eggs min.: 1  
      eggs max.: 2  


South America : widespread


Open country, desert regions, scrub, savanna and cultivated areas, primarily in arid habitats (Tropical and Subtropical zones). Open areas with scattered woods or scrub, usually near water, including open marshes, salt ponds, large rivers, rice paddies, beaches. Roosts on low perch or on ground, in Panama especially in mangroves and swampy areas. Nests in open on bare site; on open savanna or debris-strewn beach in Costa Rica.


Little is known. Nest site is near foraging area on rocky ground, Eggs are laid on leaves, no nest is built. Clutch size 1-2 eggs.

Feeding habits

Chiefly insects caught flying over marshes, open woodland etc. Forages near man-made structures, like roads, reservoir and plantations.


This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be stable, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.
Found in North (Venezuela, Peru, excluding Guianas except for vagrants) of south America, East of Andes throughout Amazonia in to Paraguay and North Argentina. Also in Southern Central America. In Suriname a very rare vagrant.
Nacunda Nighthawk status Least Concern


Probably resident throughout range.

Distribution map

Nacunda Nighthawk distribution range map

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