Date: 5/15/19 3:07 pm
From: Barry Blust <BarryBlust...>
Subject: Re: No nighthawks yet in my Pittsburgh neighborhood
Actually there is a way to note the lack of a species in eBird.  You can
create a list for a particular time & place (like a normal ebird list)
and put in the species you observe (if any) and also put in a count of
zero for Common Nighthawk.  Then in the comments you can put in a
statement like you had below.  For an example checklist like this see .  Multiple lists like this
over the normal time period (days or weeks) that you normally observe
the nighthawks would more completely document the lack of nighthawks.

As a side note, ebird lists with no species are valuable data as noted
here: .

A zero count can also be used for other purposes, such as when a dead
bird is found or when a bird's nest is found but no bird of that species
is present.  (See this link for a bit more info:

Barry Blust
(from Win 10 laptop)
Glenmoore, PA
Chester County

On 5/15/2019 8:25 AM, Kate StJohn wrote:
> Here's something that eBird can't report on except by omission...
> So far I have seen/heard no common nighthawks in my City of Pittsburgh neighborhood.  In the old days, before the Great Extinction, I'd hear & see my first nighthawks by May 5 and have at least 20 passing through by May 10-15.  This year, zero so far.
> On the other side of Schenley Park near the Squirrel Hill business district, a friend heard one nighthawk on May 2.
> Other than that my Spark Bird seems to be on its way to extinction, locally or globally.
> Kate St. John, Pittsburgh
> Visit my bird/nature blog at
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