Date: 5/20/20 7:14 am
From: Kevin Kubach (via carolinabirds Mailing List) <carolinabirds...>
Subject: Re: no more nighthawks
Chris et al.,

Thanks for this interesting discussion on Nighthawks. I don't have
extensive experience with them, but I wanted to share an observation. On
the several occasions I have visited the Aiken Gopher Tortoise Heritage
Preserve in Aiken Co., SC (at various times from spring through summer), I
have seen multiple Nighthawks in various phases of their breeding cycle.
This is a tract managed for what I would describe as a longleaf pine
"scrubland"--not the classic longleaf-wiregrass savanna, but open longleaf
with a scrubbier, sandier floor. It still supports Red-cockaded Woodpeckers
and Bachman's Sparrows--the longleaf associates. Nighthawks seem to thrive
there. Last week I observed an adult pair with what appeared to be a
juvenile (I would appreciate any thoughts based on the photos and
observations as described in my checklist, here:
https://urldefense.com/v3/__https://ebird.org/checklist/S68992572__;!!OToaGQ!4pHgrIRmv6oBlkAvLKaPcON0kASj7DDCKvjbOec_qml1w1eOXTGzyctDF3OIDAvPEUI$ ).

Are Nighthawks perhaps one of the many species dependent in part, in the
southeast, on the open landscapes provided by longleaf savannas, which we
all know have been reduced to a tiny fraction of their previous extent?

Kevin Kubach
Greenville, SC

On Wed, May 20, 2020 at 9:47 AM Parkin Hunter <carolinabirds...>
wrote:

> I have been wondering about the loss of rock roofs also. There are almost
> none at Garden City now. When my father built my house in 1962 they were
> everywhere (I am an offender.) The dock next to me had a flat, rock roof
> that the birds used to break things open. Gone now.
>
> Parkin Hunter
>
> Sent from my iPad
>
> > On May 20, 2020, at 9:18 AM, Christopher Hill (via carolinabirds Mailing
> List) <carolinabirds...> wrote:
> >
> > I’ve been living in Conway, SC near Coastal Carolina University since
> 1999 and every spring the nighthawks come back, and by late April, when I
> take my ornithology class on an all day field trip, I always hear the
> nighthawks calling over campus as I wait for the students to show up for
> the 7 am van ride to the coast. In the evenings I hear them over our house
> and when we go for walks, and at the local Food Lion parking lot. But not
> this year. They never showed up, for the first time I can remember. Maybe
> it’s that a gravel rooftop they nested on was upgraded to rubber membrane
> and they couldn’t find a nearby replacement, or maybe it’s a small local
> piece of the overall decline in nightjars and in aerial insectivores
> generally, but even though I’m not yet sure it’s a permanent, I thought I
> would note the disappearance here.
> >
> > Chris Hill
> > Conway, SC
>

 
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