Family Nightjars (Caprimulgidae)

Least Concern

Cuban Nightjar (Antrostomus cubanensis)


French: Engoulevent peut-on-voir German: Kubanachtschwalbe Spanish: Chotacabras cubano
Other common names: Greater Antillean Nightjar (when lumped with A. ekmani)

Antrostomus Cubanensis


, 1861,

Ciénaga de Zapata and coast of Manzanillo, Cuba


Was until recently considered conspecific with A. ekmani, but the two differ notably in voice. Although race insulaepinorum is generally smaller and darker than nominate, geographical variation possibly clinal, with intermediates in SW Cuba (Zapata Peninsula)#R; some overlap in measurements also apparent. Two subspecies provisionally recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • A. c. cubanensis Lawrence, 1861 – Cuba, including Cayo Esquivel del Norte, Cayo Francés, Cayo Ensenachos, Cayo Lucas, Cayo Caguanes, Cayo Santa María, Cayo Coco, Cayo Judas, Cayo Romano, Cayo Guajaba, Cayo Sabinal and Cayo Ballenato del Medio.
  • A. c. insulaepinorum (Garrido, 1983) – I of Pines.
  • Descriptive notes

    25–29·5 cm; male 68–80 g, female 50–70 g. Sexually dimorphic. Upper­parts blackish brown, speckled greyish brown, greyish white and pale buff;... read more


    Song of male is a short, evenly pitched, trilled whistle, “terrrrrrro”; a four-syllable... read more


    Typically open woodland, but also favours edges of swampland and rivers. On Isle of Pines, also... read more

    Food and feeding

    Feeds on insects. Foraging methods not described.


    Poorly documented. Breeds Mar–Jul. Nest-site in dense scrub or thicket at edge of clearing; no nest, eggs laid on leaf litter on... read more


    None recorded. Sedentary.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Occurs throughout Cuba, where it is locally common. On Isle of Pines, first reported in dense woodland S of Ciénaga de Lanier... read more

    Recommended citation

    Cleere, N. (2019). Cuban Nightjar (Antrostomus cubanensis). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 25 May 2019).