Cayenne Nightjar Setopagis maculosa

  • Order: Caprimulgiformes
  • Family: Caprimulgidae
  • Monotypic
  • Authors: Arlen Papazian
  • © Stephen P. Rogers

This mysterious species, which is known with certainty solely from a single male specimen collected in northwestern French Guiana in the first quarter of the 20th century, remains almost completely unknown. To date all efforts to definitively relocate Cayenne Nightjar have failed, although two recent possible sightings from the interior of French Guiana have been reported. Currently, therefore, nothing is known about its ecology and natural history; in particular, efforts to relocate this species are hindered by the lack of knowledge of its song, and of its habitat preferences. The much commoner Blackish Nightjar (Nyctipolus nigrescens) is even darker and more spotted than Cayenne Nightjar, while the very widespread Common Pauraque (Nyctidromus albicollis) is larger, with a longer tail, and more variegated plumage. These differences appear to confirm that Cayenne Nightjar is a valid species.

Audio needed
  • Year-round
  • Migration
  • Breeding
  • Non-Breeding

Recommended Citation

Papazian, A. (2015). Cayenne Nightjar (Setopagis maculosa), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.