Brood amalgamation in Red-necked Nightjars Caprimulgus ruficollis

Red-necked Nightjar (Caprimulgus ruficollis) Science Article 1


The study of nocturnal birds supposes a serioushandicap for observers due to the restrictionsimposed by the lack of light and the scarcityof information about important aspects oftheir behaviour, such as adoption. In fact, alloparentalcare has not been described in caprimulgidsor any other group of nocturnal birds.Adoption is a common behaviour among colonialand social species with precocial or semiprecocialchicks (Pierotti & Murphy, 1987),although there is some evidence that this phenomenoncan also occur in species with altricialchicks (Bustamante & Hiraldo, 1990; Donazaret al., 1991). The term adoption is commonlycited in relation with cases in which there wereno evidences of parental investment, but in thiscase it is better to talk about brood amalgamationinstead of adoption because no parentalinvestment to alien chicks was detected.

Juan Aragones, Luis Arias de Reyna & Pilar Recuerda, Ardeola 47(2), 2000, 251-253

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