Thursday, 18 June 2015

Nightjars

Another busy day ended at gone midnight with a nightjar survey and a very special, almost surreal  birding moment.  I could hear at least two birds churring nearby, and four others just a bit further up the track. As I listened, I suddenly heard a frog like croaking call close behind me as a nightjar appeared out the night and flew within 5 feet of me. I had my head torch on and it caught the birds eyes, which were lit up and shone like headlights on an otherwise completely silhoutted bird as it flew around me and called again. A real spooky, surreal moment! It was almost like it was powered by duracell!

It was obviously intrigued by me as it flew around a few times at close range. It felt like I could almost touch the bird it was so close and briefly it flew right through the light of my head torch which revealed much of the detail of its plumage. The whole experience maybe lasted 30 seconds, the memories a lifetime.


A couple of weeks after making this posting I came across this amazing photo of a nightjar taken by Elliot Montieth which though not at the same site as my nightjars was obviously a very similar experience.

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