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Mindo--Yellow House Trails
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Caprimulgiformes > Caprimulgidae

Lyre-tailed Nightjar

Uropsalis lyra

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Identification

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Cryptically patterned in brown and gray with a rufous collar. Most distinctive feature is male’s ridiculously long tail, up to three times the length of the body and tipped with white. Females lack long tail; look for more prominent rufous collar to help distinguish from Swallow-tailed Nightjar. Often associated with steep road cuts, landslides, or cliff faces within forests of the subtropical zones. Males roost during the day on vines or branches that allow their long tail to hang down; females more apt to roost on the ground. Most often seen at dusk, when males sing and sally out from the mountainside, flaunting their oversized tail. Tends to be found at lower elevations than similar Swallow-tailed Nightjar, but some overlap. Listen for sweet whistled song, several repeated phrases getting slightly higher in pitch.

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Learn more about Lyre-tailed Nightjar from…

Neotropical Birds

Life histories of all species breeding in Mexico, Central America, and South America