A reconsideration of some Caprimulgids on Trinidad and Tobago

Richard ffrench


The Caprimulgidae, including the sub-groups nighthawks and nightjars, are difficult birds 10 study, largely because they are nocturnal or, in some cases, crepuscular. In addition, their mottled, cryptically patterned plumage creates problems of identification for many observers, especially in dim light. The six (or seven) species known to occur on Trinidad and or Tobago (ffrench 1991) include some for which details of status and distribution are far from clear. In this paper I am outlining some of the problems in the hope that future observers may succeed in unravelling them. Two species, the Pauraque Nyctidromus albicollis an d the White- tailed Nightjar Caprimulgus cayennensis are comparatively well-known, the former having been the subject of recent papers in this journal (Quesnel 1985, 1989 . 1993). I shall deal mainly with the other species .

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