Family Nightjars (Caprimulgidae)

Near Threatened

Least Poorwill (Siphonorhis brewsteri)


French: Engoulevent grouillécor German: Haitinachtschwalbe Spanish: Chotacabras torico
Other common names: Least Pauraque

Microsiphonorhis brewsteri


, 1917,

Túbano, Azua, Dominican Republic


Formerly considered conspecific with S. americana. Two subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • S. b. brewsteri (Chapman, 1917) – Hispaniola.
  • S. b. gonavensis Garrido, 2003 – I de Gonâve I, off W Hispaniola#R.
  • Descriptive notes

    17–21·5 cm. Sexes believed similar. Upperparts greyish-brown streaked blackish-brown, crown broadly streaked blackish, broad buff nuchal collar; wing-coverts... read more


    Song of male is a whistled “toorrrrri” rising in pitch, or a warbled “tworrri”; calls include short... read more


    Typically arid or semi-arid lowlands, especially scrubby limestone woodland and areas with cactus... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet probably consists of insects. Foraging methods not recorded.


    Poorly documented. Possibly breeds Apr–Jun. One nest-site was on top of a narrow ridge at edge of burnt land; no nest, eggs laid on... read more


    None recorded. Sedentary.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Currently considered Near Threatened. Restricted-range species: present in Hispaniola EBA. Rare, but possibly under-recorded. Population roughly... read more

    Recommended citation

    Cleere, N. & Sharpe, C.J. (2018). Least Poorwill (Siphonorhis brewsteri). 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 15 December 2018).