Scissor-tailed Nightjar Hydropsalis torquata

  • Order: Caprimulgiformes
  • Family: Caprimulgidae
  • Polytypic: 2 subspecies
  • Authors: Max Witynski

Diet and Foraging


Scissor-tailed Nightjar is insectivorous; the diet includes beetles (Coleoptera), moths (Lepidoptera), flies (Diptera), lacewings (Neuroptera), bugs (Hemiptera), ants (Formicidae), cuckoo wasps (Chrysididae), bees, Orthopterans, termites (Isoptera), cockroaches (Blattaria: Blattidae), mantises (Mantodea: Mandidae), and cicadas (Cicadidae) (Schubart et al. 1965, Cleere 1998). Beetles seem to be particularly important elements of the diet. Beetles were found in each of 17 stomachs of Scissor-tail Nightjars examined by Schubart et al. (1965), including representatives of Aphodiidae, Bostrichidae, Brentidae, Carabidae, Cerambycidae, Chrysomelidae, Curculionidae, Ecotylidae, Elateridae, Geotrupidae, Hydrophilidae, Scarabaeidae, and Tenebrionidae.

Foraging Behavior

Information needed. Contribute

Recommended Citation

Witynski, M. (2015). Scissor-tailed Nightjar (Hydropsalis torquata), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.