|Chuck-will's-widow (Antrostomus carolinensis)|
Antrostomus nightjars are found in the New World, and like other nightjars they usually nest on the ground. They are mostly active in the late evening and early morning or at night, and feed predominantly on moths and other large flying insects. Most have small feet, of little use for walking, and their soft plumage is cryptically coloured to resemble bark or leaves. They have relatively long bills and rictal bristles. Some species, unusually for birds, perch along a branch, rather than across it, which helps to conceal them during the day. Temperate species are strongly migratory, wintering in the tropics. Many have repetitive and often mechanical songs.
These species were formerly placed in the genus Caprimulgus but were moved to the resurrected genus Antrostomus based on the results of a molecular phylogenetic study published in 2010. The genus Antrostomus was erected by the French naturalist Charles Bonaparte in 1838 with the chuck-will's-widow (Antrostomus carolinensis) as the type species. The generic name combines the Ancient Greek antron meaning "cavern" and stoma meaning "mouth".
The genus contains 12 species:
- Chuck-will's-widow Antrostomus carolinensis
- Rufous nightjar, Antrostomus rufus
- Cuban nightjar, Antrostomus cubanensis
- Hispaniolan nightjar, Antrostomus ekmani
- Tawny-collared nightjar, Antrostomus salvini
- Yucatan nightjar, Antrostomus badius
- Buff-collared nightjar, Antrostomus ridgwayi
- Eastern whip-poor-will, Antrostomus vociferus
- Mexican whip-poor-will, Antrostomus arizonae
- Dusky nightjar, Antrostomus saturatus
- Puerto Rican nightjar, Antrostomus noctitherus
- Silky-tailed nightjar, Antrostomus sericocaudatus
- Han, K.-L.; Robbins, M.B.; Braun, M.J. (2010). "A multigene estimate of phylogeny in the nightjars and nighthawks (Caprimulgidae)". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 55 (2): 443–453. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2010.01.023. PMID 20123032.
- Bonaparte, Charles Lucian (1838). A Geographical and Comparative List of the Birds of Europe and North America. London: John Van Voorst. p. 8.
- Jobling, James A. (2010). The Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London: Christopher Helm. p. 50. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4.
- Gill, Frank; Donsker, David, eds. (2019). "Frogmouths, Oilbird, potoos, nightjars". World Bird List Version 9.2. International Ornithologists' Union. Retrieved 21 July 2019.