Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Nightjar (Caprimulgus europaeus) & Woodcock (Scolopax rusticola) - 14th June 2008

A visit to a Nightjar site on the Berkshire border gave excellent views of both Nightjar and Woodcock as dusk drew in, approaching the site a Willow Warbler called from a nearby Oak tree shortly followed by Hobby being spotted sat in the top of a dead tree. By the time I had arrived at a regular viewing point a number of Woodcock had passed over on one of their many roding runs through the woods and by the end of the evening I had seen them at least 7 or 8 times as they passed overhead, the "twissick" and grunting/croaking "wuhg, uhg-uhg" roding calls being heard long before they flew over. I didn't have to wait long to hear the first Nightjar "churring" and following the call I found a single bird perched in the top of a conifer tree, it soon flew off and headed deeper in to the copse and began churring again but out of view. I walked around the wood getting a number of views of both Nightjar and Woodcock including a fantastic view as a Nightjar flew overhead and would estimate at least 5 churring Nightjars dotted around the site.

The Nightjar is currently a RED STATUS species due to the destruction of many of it's nesting sites, they are nocturnal and best seen and heard at dusk in their favoured Heathlands and conifer plantations whilst they search for Moths and insects.

Added To My Year List

182. Nightjar



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