Last night we saw 169 Common Nighthawks migrating over our property in NH. Fortunately, our property fronts on a pond that is a dammed up part of a river that runs south to north and nighthawks often migrate along river corridors. So, we are in a very good spot for seeing migrating nighthawks. At about 5 pm we got ourselves stationed on our deck with binoculars and from 5-5:30 pm saw 81 nightawks. We realized making dinner would be a challenge, so we tag-teamed grilling the burgers, one of us always scanning through our binos. We ate dinner with one hand holding the burger, the other hand holding the binos. In the next half hour 54 more nighthawks came, then 34 more over the next hour and a half. We ended at 7:30 pm. Very rewarding to see these unusual birds whose numbers seem to be dropping. Tonight we'll be watching again.
There is an official nighthawk count that comprises southern NH and the upper two-thirds of MA. If you live in these areas, try and watch for the nighthawks tonight and enter your data at their website, click here. The more we learn about the migration routes, numbers, and breeding habitat of these wonderful birds, the better the chance for protecting them.