Common Nighthawks

Every year around Labor Day weekend Common Nighthawks migrate through our region in mass. In the evenings keep your eyes peeled to the sky for a bird that at first glance might look like a large bat. They are often seen snapping up aerial insects that rise at dusk. Pay very close attention and you can hear their wide gaping mouths snap shut on the unsuspecting prey! If you can train a pair of binoculars on them you'll notice a distinct white bar on their pointed wings. They have an erratic fight pattern that links insect to insect across the sky and you'll often see a "river" of nighthawks that can number in the hundreds, streaming in a general direction (typically south). Their ultimate winter destination? South America!

So due yourself a favor and witness one of the great bird migrations of the world by spending a few minutes each evening looking up at the sky over the next two weeks.