Standard-Winged Nightjars
Macrodipteryx longipennis

Planning a birding Safari at the end your next business trip to Africa...? Get ready to meet the Standard-Winged Nightjars, the most spectacular norctunal Nightjars ever recorded in Uganda.

The standard-winged night jar was given its binomial name by Shan in 1796.

These birds are Standard-Winged because the males acquire wing streamers or projections twice the length of their body during the breeding season.

In Africa, you're likely to see these birds in display flight in any savanna habitat, especially close to water, but there is no better place to seek them out than on the road to the top of Murchison Falls after dusk!

In this section of the Birding Safari Guide we share with you information about Standard-Winged Nightjars in Uganda in order to make your Bird watching tour to Africa even more captivating.

You will find information about:

Where to find the Standard-Winged Nightjar in Uganda

Standard-winged Nightjars are resident in African bushed grasslands and marshy lakeshores from 600-1400m.

In Uganda you will commonly find these birds within breeding range in North Western Uganda, but they are quite scarce elsewhere.

The best time to Visit Uganda when you feel you MUST SEE the Standard-winged Nightjars is during the months of September to April.

How you will know that you've seen a Standard-Winged Nightjar

When roosting on the ground during day time, you will see a medium-sized 20-30cm long night jar, mainly variegated grey, with a browner collar.

The breeding male bird is unique and spectacular with large flags at ends of long wires, these are elongated shafts of second primary feathers.

In flight, this bird looks like a night jar being chased by two smaller birds.

The non-breeding male and female birds are more like typical-female nightjars, but without white wing spots or tall corners.

If you manage to see the birds in good light you will see a combination of a rufous hindneck, and strongly barred blackish and rofous flight feathers and tail.

Interesting Facts about Standard-Winged Nightjars

The call of a Standard-Winged Nightjar is a very high pitched and rapid insect-like titititititit...

Did you know?

The female Standard-Winged Nightjar makes no nest. This African bird places her two elongated elliptical eggs on base ground.

The Standard-Winged Nightjar feeds on insects in flight, the huge gape opening wide for moths and beetles.

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