Skip to content

SANParks.org Forums

View unanswered posts | View active topics






Post new topic Reply to topic  Page 1 of 1
 [ 13 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2013 12:18 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue May 02, 2006 11:07 am
Posts: 215
Location: Western Cape
Ok, so I was kept awake almost the entire night of November 4 in Tamboti ( :D :D :D ) by Nightjar(s) (I am assuming the (s)) calling incessantly in the surrounding trees. Now the (stupid) question I have is: Apart from the obvious, i.e taking a torch and stalking the birds, is there another way of observing these birds? I also have a Fiery-Necked Nightjar (one of the Tamboti callers) visit every now and then in the trees around my house in Stellenbosch (either that or someone with a recording is screwing with me); yet I have not seen this bird!

By the way, the reason I did not do the stalking with a torch bit in Tamboti is because I had no torch (unplanned visit). Made the midnight walk on a moonless night to the ablutions quite interesting!

_________________
Moving on...


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2013 3:08 pm 
Offline
Senior Virtual Ranger
Senior Virtual Ranger
User avatar

Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2007 9:08 am
Posts: 2140
Location: Leeu Valley
Not a stupid question at all Albert. Nightjars are very difficult to see due to their nocturnal nature and I am pretty sure that stalking them on foot is equally daunting.

I have found, in the KNP, the best way to find them is to go on a Night drive, not sunset drive. They are normally all over the tar and gravel roads. Now if you have a nature loving guide who is patient enough on that drive, I am sure he will stop and keep the spotlight on them for you to look at them.

Or better yet, book yourself in on a Big Birding weekend in KNP which is held twice a year (under correction) in November and February. Then the guides actually have to stop and help look for Nightjars :D


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2013 3:35 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Mon Aug 20, 2007 8:49 pm
Posts: 80
Location: Centurion
Quote:
I also have a Fiery-Necked Nightjar (one of the Tamboti callers) visit every now and then in the trees around my house in Stellenbosch (either that or someone with a recording is screwing with me); yet I have not seen this bird!


Hi Albert, If I may add my proverbial pennies worth. I dont think anyone is screwing with your head. I heard and spotted these Fiery-Necked Nightjar's in Swellendam also at Bontebok. So yes, with all the nice hiding places and insects in Stellenbosch, why not? Anyway my distribution map shows that they are there.Otherwise concur with DotDan :thumbs_up:


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Sat Dec 07, 2013 11:53 am 
Offline

Joined: Fri May 30, 2008 2:33 pm
Posts: 203
Location: Paarl
Hi Albert

I live in Paarl and have on two occasions each time for about three nights in a row have had a nightjar calling from a tree very close to house (we abutt a park). Only on one occasion did I get to see it - I got a glimpse of it in the torchlight as it flew away. The reason I was not able to stalk it (it was perched on a telephone pole about 20m from my back door) is that I have movement sensors that switch on for security reasons so as I tried to slip out the back door I was caught by my own security! I at least got a glimpse as it flew away. I have also heard the Good Lord deliver us call on a farm near Wellington.

In the KNP we took a night drive at Biyamiti and the guide was superb - he knew I was a birder (because I told him) so he hunted up two species for me. Both times the birds froze in the road and he got them square in the headlights from close while I upped ISO to 1600 and got fair photos with a Canon SX30 which is hardly hi-tech these days. If I can find the photos I'll try to post them. Give me until to tonight. I have to search a bit. He also knew where the eagles roosted so I got two more species including a new tick. I regret I cannot remember his name but he got a fat tip from me at the end of the evening!

Regards
Pete

_________________
Pete


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Sun Dec 08, 2013 6:30 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri May 30, 2008 2:33 pm
Posts: 203
Location: Paarl
Here are the two nightjars from Biyamiti.

Image

Image

Keep well
Pete

_________________
Pete


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 8:38 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue May 02, 2006 11:07 am
Posts: 215
Location: Western Cape
In answer to my own question; finding a Fiery-Necked Nightjar is quite simple. You get into your car, back out of your driveway and drive down the street at exactly 19:45 on March 9, and there it is! Right in the middle of the tarred street.
One of two unexpected lifers this weekend. :lol:

_________________
Moving on...


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 11, 2014 12:07 am 
Offline

Joined: Fri May 30, 2008 2:33 pm
Posts: 203
Location: Paarl
Great to hear, Albert.

What was the other lifer?

Keep well
Pete

_________________
Pete


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 11, 2014 9:35 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue May 02, 2006 11:07 am
Posts: 215
Location: Western Cape
Ahem...

Hartlaub's Gull :redface:

Have not paid much attention to the gulls and plovers up to now (on the to do list)

This one was sitting near my car when I returned from my 110 km cycle around the cape peninsula on Sunday....

_________________
Moving on...


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Tue Mar 11, 2014 12:46 pm 
Offline
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Legendary Virtual Ranger
User avatar
Award: Funniest/Best Forumite Name (2013)
Joined: Wed Mar 16, 2005 12:38 pm
Posts: 9639
Location: In the shadow of Table Mountain
FAC Member (2012)
Looks like you kept your eye on the road on Sunday Albert, and not on the birds. :roll:



Well you might have seen a Cape gannet out to sea. :whistle: :tongue:

_________________
Whatever (according to BB): "You are correct but I don't want to admit it".


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 10, 2014 9:57 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Jul 23, 2008 8:50 pm
Posts: 168
Location: JHB, Gauteng
@pnm I'm going to hazard a guess at the nightjars you've put here if I may?

The first one looks to possibly be a female Square-tailed Nightjar. The lack of rufous on the back of the neck to me rules out fiery-necked and you can just make out the cinnamon-buff outer tail feathers which points to Square-tail.

The second bird looks to be another female, this time European Nightjar. Along with the Freckled Nighjar and Pennant-winged Nightjars, these birds have no or very little white markings on the wings when perched on the ground, also the rufous flight feathers showing on the bird also points to European.

This is one family of birds that I too have been trying to get my head around and maybe I might be getting there, not sure though.

Thanks

Ross


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 11, 2014 5:45 am 
Offline
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Legendary Virtual Ranger
User avatar
Award: Sighting of the Year - Birds (2013)
Joined: Wed Sep 06, 2006 3:33 pm
Posts: 2316
Location: I'm the patty in Jam Street
Award: Birder of the Year (2012)
Hi Ross. I can't fault your ID of bird #2. The generally grey appearance also points to European.

As far as bird #1 is concerned, I like your approach, but find the white spots in the primary flight feathers at odds with your conclusion as the wing spots of a female Square-tailed nightjar tends to be smaller and a shade of red/brown. STs usually shows a little red around the collar (which can disappear if the featheres are worn) and a black crown, both of which I fail to find in the nightjar in question. I lean a little toward it being another European nightjar, but I cannot really come up with an alternative suggestion with which I'm fully comfortable, though. Nightjars are very tough challenges to ID at best of times and this one is just beyond me. Maybe another 'mite may have some ideas.

_________________
665 Latest lifer: Neergaard's sunbird


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 11, 2014 1:46 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Jul 23, 2008 8:50 pm
Posts: 168
Location: JHB, Gauteng
Hi Johan

Thanks for the response. Ye Nightjar I.D. is a constant work in progress. Getting others perspective makes the job a little easier. I see what you mean about the white spots, this was also an odditiy to me, in that when I get to see Nightjars I always look for these spots or the lack of them. This was why I didn't go with European in this example. I do agree with you in that there is no other bird that I would tag a name to, so lets see if this can go a bit further.

Regards

Ross


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Nightjars...a (stupid) question
Unread postPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2014 1:34 pm 
Offline
Legendary Virtual Ranger
Legendary Virtual Ranger
User avatar

Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2005 8:47 pm
Posts: 12056
Location: meandering between senility and menopause
FAC Member (2013)
Albert I love your question. It is the kind of useful information I would not think of asking until too late.

Pnm, what lovely :cam: The only time I have ever had a good look at Nighjars has been on night drives with good guides.

_________________
The bird doesn't sing because it has answers, it sings because it has a song.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 13 posts ] 



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

cron
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group

Webcams Highlights

Addo Nossob Orpen Satara
Addo Nossob Orpen Satara
Submitted by swartj at 19:10:55 Submitted by Anonymous at 21:30:31 Submitted by grannyb at 17:21:32 Submitted by BevAnn at 12:29:12