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12) Common Nighthawk

These birds belong to a group called Goatsuckers, which is an unusual name for a group of birds. Perhaps the person who named this group saw these birds in a field of goats and thought that the birds were feeding on goat's milk. These are all nocturnal birds. They are completely insectivorous and catch and consume their prey on the wing. Their nest is a shallow depression on the soil almost perfectly camouflaged. The common nighthawk is quite abundant on our campus. In fact, it nests on top of Munger Hall, Phillips Science, Phillips Annex Building, and anywhere there is a flat roof. One good place to see it at night is in the light of the beams of floodlights that mark Bruno entrance. You will see these zipping back and forth through the shafts of light as they hunt insects.