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About the Project

The Maine Nightjar Monitoring Project was launched in response to reports of widespread declines in Eastern Whip-poor-wills and Common Nighthawks throughout their eastern breeding ranges. Suspected declines in Maine evidenced by extensive anecdotal observations led to both the Eastern Whip-poor-will and Common Nighthawk being listed as a Species of Greatest Conservation Need in 2016. 

The project was launched in 2017 to begin collecting baseline data using monitoring routes throughout southern and Downeast Maine. In 2018, the project partnered with the Maine Bird Atlas (a project of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife) and gained additional volunteers who conducted surveys across the state. The project began collecting data on other crepuscular and nocturnal bird species (owls, thrushes, and others) that same year. After conducting power analysis of the baseline data collected in 2018, the project expanded the project area and increased the number of routes from 25 to 63. 

There are two options for participation in the project: 

 1) Adopt and annually monitor a 9-mile survey route with passes through Eastern Whip-poor-will habitat (completing both a sunset and moonrise survey) during the breeding season. 

 2) Report incidental observations of crepuscular and nocturnal birds near your home or (if you are a Maine Bird Atlas volunteer) throughout your Atlas block. 

We greatly appreciate participation and support of any kind. Monitoring crepuscular and nocturnal birds is a fun and exciting challenge. We hope you will take part in the adventure as a citizen scientist! 

Want to adopt a route or start making incidental reports? Visit the Volunteer page and sign up to take part! 

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