LOUISIANA BIRD RECORDS COMMITTEE

REPORT FORM

     This form is intended as a convenience in reporting observations of species on the Louisiana Bird Records Committee (LBRC) Review List. The LBRC recommends the use of this form or a similar format when submitting records for review (to assure that all pertinent information is accounted for). Attach additional pages as necessary. Please print or type. Attach xerox of field notes, drawings, photographs, or tape recordings, if available. Include all photos for more obscurely marked species. When completed, mail to Secretary, Louisiana Bird Records Committee, c/o Museum of Natural Science, 119 Foster Hall, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA 70803-3216.

1. English and Scientific names:Lesser Nighthawk

 

2. Number of individuals, sexes, ages, general plumage (e.g., 2 in alternate plumage): 1 female

3. Parish: Cameron

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Specific Locality:Peveto Woods

4. Date(s) when observed: 04/06/2012

5. Time(s) of day when observed:about 3:00 pm

6. Reporting observer and address: Paul Conover, Lafayette, LA

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7. Other observers accompanying reporter who also identified the bird(s): Mac Myers

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8. Other observers who independently identified the bird(s):

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9. Light conditions (position of bird in relation to shade and to direction and amount of light): Bird was seen in sunlight and shade, in flight and perched, from good angles.

10. Optical equipment (type, power, condition): Zeiss 10s, Nikon Fieldscope 20-60, various cameras

11. Distance to bird(s):20-30 yards at minimum

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12. Duration of observation:Probably 30-45 minutes off and on over a couple of hours.

13. Habitat: In chenier woods.First noted in pecan tree, then exclusively in live oaks.

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14. Behavior of bird / circumstances of observation:Bird was first spotted roosting on limb.We flushed it several times to get flight photos.The bird seemed undisturbed most of the time, and even after being flushed would sit tight.In flight, the bird glided a lot, often directly to the next perch without much indecision.Flaps interspersed with glides were fairly shallow.††

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15. Description (include only what was actually seen, not what "should" have been seen; include if possible: total length/relative size compared to other familiar species, body bulk, shape, proportions, bill, eye, leg, and plumage characteristics. Stress features that separate it from similar species):

 

A small, compact nightjar with whitish bar across primaries and white mark in the bend of wings.

 

Perched

Overall cryptically marked, matching bark color and pattern of live oaks.

White-buff throat patch extending laterally to rear sides of neck; visible only when bird stretched neck beyond resting position.

 

Two prominent wingbars and suggestions of at least a third, made up of whitish tips (upper wingbar) and beige tips (lower wingbar/s) to covert feathers.These tips divided centrally by dark shaft streak.Exposed primary tips faded medium brown with no markings visible.I believe 5 primary tips extended beyond tertials.††

 

Underside

Ground color of underparts buffy.Breast and belly with distinct narrow medium brown wavy barring, evenly and closely spaced (pale area between bars only slightly wider than the dark bars).Undertail coverts with similar barring, but with narrow dark bars much more widely spaced, and bracket shaped.

 

Tail

Tail underneath with irregularly shaped but evenly spaced dark bars (medium brown) separated by narrower buffy bars. No white subterminal bar.

 

In flight

Wings

Underwings: Wing linings with the same buff ground color and darker brown barring as the underparts.Secondaries tipped with buff and barred with broad buff bars.Inner primaries with irregular pattern of buff spots and narrow bars.Broad whitish/buff bar across outer four primaries more than halfway down the length of the primaries.Bar narrows toward rear.Of the spots making up the bar, the two leading spots whitish, the rear two more buff.

 

Upperwings:Inner primaries with rows of buff spots running somewhat parallel to bar across primaries.

16. Voice:

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17. Similar species (include how they were eliminated by your observation):Common Nighthawk:Some Common Nighthawks can apparently show paler markings on primaries and secondaries, but Iíve never seen photos of Commons with broad buff secondary barring as opposed to thin pale bars , or any with extensive buff spotting on base of inner primaries.The worn primaries of this bird would suggest that they were replaced almost a year ago, indicating Lesser.Bar across primaries narrowing toward rear, also good for Lesser. P9 appears to be longer than P10 in photos, also a mark in favor of Lesser.††

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18. Photographs or tape recordings obtained? (by whom? attached?): yes, by me.

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19. Previous experience with this species:Fairly extensive.

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20. Identification aids: (list books, illustrations, other birders, etc. used in identification):

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a. at time of observation:

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b. after observation:

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21. This description is written from: memory and thorough photo review.

22. Are you positive of your identification if not, explain: Yes

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23. Date: 4/19/2012

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