Neotropical Birds logo
Version 1.0

This is a historic version of this account.  Current version


Little Nightjar Setopagis parvula

Kaiya Provost
Version: 1.0 — Published April 17, 2015



There is little information on the behavior of Little Nightjar. Like most other species of nightjar, it is nocturnal. This species catches insects in flight, but it is not known whether it primarily forages with sallies from a perch (on the ground, as is implied by the brief comments of Barrows 1884, or on a branch), or whether it also captures insects while in continuous flight.

The song usually is given at dusk, after dark, and in the early morning, but in southern Brazil, Belton (1984) reported hearing it sing occasionally into late morning. Singing is from an elevated perch, such as a stump (Sick 1993).


There are no published data on territorial defense, maintenance, or fidelity, or of home range size, for Little Nightjar.

Sexual Behavior

Little information; both sexes of Little Nightjar attend the nest (Melo et al. 2000), and presumably is at least socially monogamous.

Social and interspecific behavior

Undescribed; Little Nightjar presumably is solitary or in pairs, as is typical of nightjars


No reports of predation on Little Nightjar.

Recommended Citation

Provost, K. (2015). Little Nightjar (Setopagis parvula), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/nb.litnig1.01