Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum

Caprimulgus affinis Horsfield, 1821

Species:C. affinis
Common Names:Savanna Nightjar
Status:Uncommon resident


This species ranges from the Indian subcontinent, south China, Peninsula Malaysia, Singapore to Sumatra, Borneo, Java, Bali, the Philippines, Sulawesi, and the Lesser Sundas.


In Singapore, it has been recorded at Bedok Reservoir, Changi, Choa Chu Kang, Mandai, Marine East, Old Jurong Road, Pasir Ris, Poyan, Pulau Semakau, Punggol, Seletar Island, Sembawang, Sentosa, Tampines, Tuas, West Coast Park, Woodlands, Yishun Ring Rd.

Locality Map

General Biology

The Savanna Nightjar frequents all open country habitats, and grassland with open stony patches.

During hot afternoons when the nightjar is sitting on its nest in the open ground, it keeps cool by gular fluttering, as seen in the video in this LINK.

Images of immature birds can be viewed HERE.

Up to 20 birds were seen roosting on the ground in a scrubby area in Singapore.

Life Cycle

The nest is a scrape in the open ground. The female lays a clutch of two eggs - light brown with mottled light brown and black patches. Both adults incubate the eggs. When threatened, the adult fly off to a short distance away and pretend to be injured in order to lure the predator away.

Eggs were found in April and May.


The Savanna Nightjar was first recorded in Singapore in 1988 at Tuas.


Wang, L. K. 2011. Nightjars. Pp. 392. In: Ng, P. K. L., R. T. Corlett & H. T. W. Tan (editors). Singapore Biodiversity. An Encyclopedia of the Natural Environment and Sustainable Development. Editions Didier Millet, Singapore. 552 pp.

Wang, L.K. & Hails, C.J. 2007. An annotated checklist of birds of Singapore. Raffles Bulletin of Zoology, Supplement 15: 1–179, Singapore.

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