Behavior And Reproduction

Frogmouths are crepuscular (kri-PUS-kyuh-lur) and nocturnal, meaning they become active at twilight, just before dark, and in the evening. They rest in trees during the day and hunt for food at night. Birds roost in trees during the day, camouflaged (KAM-uh-flajd) by their color. Since birds hide so well, there is still a lot to learn about some species of frogmouths.


Frogmouths rest in trees during the daytime, camouflaged by plumage that resembles the colors of the branches where they roost. The birds do not just rely on their coloring to keep them safe. Frogmouths sleep lengthwise, as if standing up. If they sense a disturbance, birds shut their eyes, stiffen their posture, and point their bills upward. Frogmouths imitate their surroundings so well that people looking directly at them think they are looking at branches.


Australian frogmouths build platform-like nests made of sticks. Nests are located in trees, and female Australian frog-mouths lay from one to three eggs. The female sits on the eggs, incubating them until they hatch. Both parents feed the chicks.

The Asian frogmouths build a small nest on a branch or tree stem. The nest is constructed of soft feathers called down. Spider webs and tiny lichen plants are placed around the nest to camouflage it. Female Asian frogmouths lay one egg. In some species, the male incubates the egg, sitting on it during the day.

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