Square-tailed nightjar

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Square-tailed nightjar
Square-tailed Nightjar (Caprimulgus fossii) (6045934838).jpg
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Caprimulgiformes
Family: Caprimulgidae
Genus: Caprimulgus
Species: C. fossii
Binomial name
Caprimulgus fossii
Hartlaub, 1857

The square-tailed nightjar or Mozambique nightjar (Caprimulgus fossii) is a species of nightjar in the Caprimulgidae family. It occurs mainly south of the equator in Africa, but enters the tropics during the northern hemisphere summer. An isolated race occurs in Equatorial Guinea and western Gabon. It is a seasonal visitor to the northern Democratic Republic of the Congo, northern Tanzania, southern Kenya and southern Uganda. It occurs year round in Angola, Botswana, Burundi, Republic of the Congo, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.[2]


This bird's call is a prolonged churring, which alternates between a fast and slow pace roughly every second. As such it differs from the similar long-tailed and slender-tailed nightjars which produce fast and slow churrs respectively.[2]


  • C. f. fossii – western Gabon
  • C. f. welwitschii – central plateaus and west coast
  • C. f. mossambicus – eastern lowlands and lowveld
  • C. f. griseoplurus – seasonally in northern Botswana[2]


  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Caprimulgus fossii". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c Holyoak, David Thomas (2001). Nightjars and their allies: the Caprimulgiformes. Oxford University Press. pp. 633–639, Plate 19. 

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