Great-eared Nightjar   Eurostopodus  macrotis

Etymology :

  • Eurostopodus : Greek word eurostos – strong, stout; podos –foot   { Strong footed}
  • Macrotis : Greek word makros- long; ous,otos – ear { Long eared}

Vernacular Names : Ass: Dinkona, Mal: Sandhya muzhakki

Distribution in India: Resident of Western Ghats and North East India.

Description:  Size of 40-41 cm. Sexes similar.  It shows distinct “ears”. The upperparts are brown speckled and spotted buff, cinnamon and greyish-white, crown is boldly spotted blackish-brown. It has a broad tawny-buff or buff nuchal collar; wing-coverts are brown, speckled and spotted tawny, buff and cinnamon. The scapulars are brown, boldly spotted blackish-brown with large white patch, occasionally tinged buff, on either side of lower throat. The underparts buffish, indistinctly barred brown. Both sexes lack white markings on wings and tail. The iris is dark brown, bill is brownish, legs and feet are flesh-brown. Races vary mainly in size and colour, although coloration in all subspecies extremely variable. It is found in primary forestoften by rivers, secondary forest, edges and clearings, second growth, scrubland and wooded grasslands and open country. It is found from sea-level to 1000 m.

Food habits: It eats moths, beetles, bugs and termites. It forages in flight, hunting over forest clearings, neighboring grasslands and near habitation.

Breeding habits:  They breed in Jan–May in South India and Jan–May in Malay Peninsula. Thenest-site is often under thick bush or bamboo clump in lightly wooded country or bamboo jungle, they don’t  build any nest, egg is laid on leaf litter or bare ground. They lay a clutch of 1 egg.