Date: 5/15/19 3:40 am
From: Don Simonson <don.r.simonson...>
Subject: [MDBirding] Bullbats are Back! 42 Common NIghthawks Violettes Lock Mont. Co.
Goatsuckers Galore! I enjoyed a flock of 42 Common Nighthawks from 7:55 pm to 8:45 pm last night, 5/14/19. The first ones appeared high over the lock, then low in the parking lot. One even dove toward me after a very few minutes, very close and as it whipped past my head it gave a combination of near-simulatenous beak snap, "Peeeent" call, deep wing roar/hum and wing snap. aside from that first encounter, I heard not a single peent or wing-roar, but plenty of snapping beaks.
As dark fell, More birds seemed to be emerging from the treetops just inland and just upstream from the parking lot, and moving upstream, so I walked north on Violettes Lock to a point where I could survey the Breton Woods fields n. of the road. Many dozens were hawking the fields and treetops silhouetted by the last light of a spectacular sunset. I counted 29 nighthawks hawking low along the south treeline simultaneously in binocular view, with another 11 already moving northwest higher in the air, in the next second in a bino view to the northwest. Together with the five or six first observed at parking lot/lock, I am confident at least 42 were present.
Good birding!
Don Simonson Darnestown MD

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