12" (30 cm). Pigeon-sized. Larger than the Whip-poor-will. Buff-brown body, brown chin.
A mellow chuck-will's-widow, repeated over and over, the chuck deep and low, the rest of the call whistled.
wing claps and croaks
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Open woodlands and clearings near agricultural country.
Breeds from Kansas, Indiana, and Long Island south to Gulf Coast states. Winters chiefly in tropics, but a few winter in Florida and along Gulf Coast.
The "Chuck" is nocturnal and rarely seen during the day. When flushed, it flies off a short distance, then drops to the ground again. These birds hunt close to the ground, catching flying insects such as moths, beetles, and winged ants and termites. They have occasionally been reported to prey on warblers and sparrows.
2 creamy-white eggs, with purple and brown markings, on bare ground or dead leaves.