The limited number of Lightnings available during late 1942 and early 1943 had to be used to make up attrition in the 39th Fighter Squadron and to equip only a single squadron in each of the 8th and 49th Fighter Groups of the Fifth Air Force in New Guinea, and of the 18th and 347th Fighter Groups of the Thirteenth Air Force on Guadalcanal.
During this time, two P-38Fs of the 6th Fighter Squadron of the 18th Fighter Group were equipped with radar as single seat night fighters operating from Henderson Field to curb the activities of "Bedcheck Charlie", a Japanese aircraft flying nuisance sorties over Guadalcanal at night.
No note on photo recon equipped P-38’s.
By 8 February General Patch was no longer convinced that the Japanese would attempt a landing to recapture the airfields. They were known to be withdrawing supplies from-Dome Cove, and Patch expressed his belief that the Tokyo Express was evacuating the remaining Japanese.15
Aerial photographs of the Cape Esperance area would have shown conclusively whether the enemy forces there were being evacuated or reinforced, but XIV Corps headquarters could not obtain photographic coverage on 7 and 8 February. One squadron, flying P-38's, of the 17th Photographic Reconnaissance Group had just relieved the 2d Marine Air Wing of reconnaissance duties on Guadalcanal. The 17th had good planes and cameras but did not possess filters for the camera lenses, nor proper paper on which to print pictures.16
Thus General Patch had no way of determining exactly what General Hyakutake's troops at Cape Esperance were doing.
See Page 338: http://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/USA/USA-P-Guadalcanal/USA-P-Guadalcanal-15.html
Unfortunately this is not USAAF, but the Corps was utilizing P-38’s in this role.