Family Nightjars (Caprimulgidae)

Least Concern

Philippine Nightjar (Caprimulgus manillensis)


French: Engoulevent des Philippines German: Philippinennachtschwalbe Spanish: Chotacabras filipino

Caprimulgus manillensis


, 1875,

Manila, Luzon, Philippines


Closely related to C. atripennis, C. macrurus, C. andamanicus and C. celebensis, and all five were formerly considered conspecific; in recent years has commonly been lumped with C. celebensis, but differs in both voice and morphology. Proposed race delacouri for Mindanao birds is not sufficiently distinct to warrant recognition. Monotypic.


Philippines (except Palawan and associated islands).

Descriptive notes

23–25 cm; male 59–68 g, female 58–71 g. Sexes similar. Upperparts greyish brown streaked blackish brown, broadly so on crown, with no nuchal collar;... read more


Song of male is a repetitive “took-toor-r-r” or “chook choorrr” comprising... read more


Typically primary and secondary forest, pine forest and second growth; also scrubland, open country... read more

Food and feeding

Probably feeds on insects (moths and beetles). Foraging methods not documented, beyond that food is taken on wing.


Poorly known. Breeds Apr–May, possibly longer, throughout range. No nest, eggs laid on leaf litter on ground, usually in forest or... read more


None documented. Sedentary.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. Widespread but probably not common anywhere throughout its range. Fairly common in Angat forest, near Manila, Luzon. Occurs in Rajah Sikatuna... read more

Recommended citation

Cleere, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Philippine Nightjar (Caprimulgus manillensis). 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 19 February 2020).