A project to survey and understand as much as we can about the European Nightjar (Caprimulgus europaeus) in the Forest of Dean, using a combination of observation, remote audio recording, field recordings, bio-acoustic analysis, ringing, telemetry, DNA sampling, and trail cameras. The project began back in 2002 but has grown both in its scope and methodology since that time.

This website collates some of the media that results from the project. Complete, accurate records and breeding data are submitted to the BTO and County Bird Recorder annually, as well as shared with the relevant land owner/manager. The project is funded by a combination of grants from Gloucestershire Naturalists’ Society, Forestry England, a lottery funded local conservation project and personal funds.

Most recent project updates and articles…

Gloucestershire records 1858-2015

The history of the Nightjar in Gloucestershire reflects the national one; early records tell us that it was once widespread, that the species has endured a long decline throughout the…

A sticky situation

Ground nesting birds always run a risk when breeding. There’s only so much a nightjar can achieve against a predator when its only ammunition is the ability to imitate a…

Stereo recordings

Some stereo recordings of Nightjars singing at dawn. This is one of the best ways to enjoy Nightjars, by going out to watch and listen between 3 and 4:30 AM…

Nest relief

AudioMoth recording of nest relief. Not edited for length, so that the actual duration of events is shown, hence gap between vocalisations. After hearing the male flight call (0:02), the…

Vocalisations

Various sounds we’ve heard in the field, and in particular a recording we made at a nest, have had me searching through the literature to find a reference giving some…

Site overview

All of the sites within our survey area exist within the area shown on this map. At the time of writing, Nightjars are not to be found anywhere else in…