White-throated swallow

The white-throated swallow (Hirundo albigularis) is a small bird in the swallow family. It is a common species, found in southern Africa, which has benefited from the increased nesting opportunities presented by the construction of bridges and dams.

White-throated swallow
White-throated Swallows (Hirundo albigularis) (6817418149)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Hirundinidae
Genus: Hirundo
Species:
H. albigularis
Binomial name
Hirundo albigularis
Hirundo albigularis distribution map, sans legend
approximate range

     austral winter      austral summer

Description

The white-throated swallow is 14–17 cm long. It has glossy dark blue upperparts and a bright chestnut crown. A dark blue-black breast band separates the white throat from the greyish white underparts and underwing coverts. The upper wings, underwing flight feathers and forked tail are blackish-blue, but the undertail has white patches near the feather tips. The white throat and blackish breast band are distinctions from similar Hirundo species. The outer feathers are slightly longer in the male than the female. Juveniles are duller than the adult, with shorter outer tail feathers and a browner crown. The call is a mix of warbles and twitters.

Distribution and habitat

The swallow breeds in southern Africa from Angola and Zambia southwards to the Cape in South Africa. It is mainly migratory, wintering in Angola, Zambia and southern Zaire. This is a bird of open country and grassland, with a preference for highlands and nearby water. It is often found around man-made structures.

Behaviour

Feeding

It feeds mainly on flying insects, which it pursues with a fast twisting flight like a barn swallow.

Breeding

The white-throated swallow builds a bowl-shaped mud nest with a soft lining of grass or hair. It is usually near or over water, and is built on a ledge under an overhang on a rock face or on a man-made structure such as a building, dam wall, culvert or bridge. Uninhabited buildings are preferred to houses. The nest may be reused for subsequent broods or in later years.

The three eggs of a typical clutch are white with brown and blue blotches, and are incubated by the female alone for 15–16 days to hatching. Both parents then feed the chicks. Fledging takes another 20–21 days, but the young birds will return to the nest to roost for a few days after the first flight. The young can swim a short distance to safety if they fall from the nest.

Gallery

Hirundo albigularis, nes, Tweeling, a
Nest in a natural setting
Hirundo albigularis, nes onder bruggie, Pretoriuskloof, a
Nest under a bridge
Hirundo albigularis, nes, Austin Roberts, b
Nest against a thatch roof
Hirundo albigularis, eier, Tweeling, a
Egg
White-throated Swallow, Hirundo albigularis at Marievale Nature Reserve, Gauteng, South Africa. Sequence of two juveniles being fed on the fly by their parents. (15444840709)
Parent feeding fledgling

References

  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Hirundo albigularis". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
  • Sinclair, Hockey and Tarboton, SASOL Birds of Southern Africa, ISBN 1-86872-721-1
  • Turner and Rose, Swallows and Martins ISBN 0-7470-3202-5

External links

Atticora

Atticora is a genus of bird in the swallow family Hirundinidae. These species are found in South America.

It contains the following two species:

White-banded swallow (Atticora fasciata)

Black-collared swallow (Atticora melanoleuca)

Banded martin

The banded martin or banded sand martin (Riparia cincta) is a small passerine bird in the swallow family. It is an inhabitant of the African continent.

Black-and-rufous swallow

The black-and-rufous swallow (Hirundo nigrorufa) is a species of bird in the family Hirundinidae.

Forest swallow

The forest swallow (Petrochelidon fuliginosa) is a species of bird in the family Hirundinidae.

It is found in Cameroon, Republic of the Congo, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and Nigeria.

Galápagos martin

The Galápagos martin (Progne modesta) is a species of bird in the Hirundinidae family, endemic to the Galápagos Islands.

Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical dry shrubland, subtropical or tropical seasonally wet or flooded lowland grassland, pastureland, and heavily degraded former forest.

Greater striped swallow

The greater striped swallow (Cecropis cucullata) is a large swallow that is native to Africa south of the equator.

Grey-rumped swallow

The grey-rumped swallow (Pseudhirundo griseopyga) is a species of bird in the monotypic genus, Pseudhirundo, in the family Hirundinidae.

It is found in Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

Hirundo

The bird genus Hirundo is a group of passerines in the family Hirundinidae (swallows and martins). The genus name is Latin for a swallow. These are the typical swallows, including the widespread barn swallow. Many of this group have blue backs, red on the face and sometimes the rump or nape, and whitish or rufous underparts. With fifteen species this genus is the largest in its family.

Peruvian martin

The Peruvian martin (Progne murphyi) is a species of bird in the family Hirundinidae. It is found in Peru and far norther Chile.

Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forest, subtropical or tropical moist montane forest, subtropical or tropical dry lowland grassland, subtropical or tropical high-altitude grassland, pastureland, and urban areas. It is threatened by habitat loss.

Preuss's cliff swallow

Preuss's cliff swallow (Petrochelidon preussi), also known as Preuss's swallow, is a species of bird in the family Hirundinidae.

Progne

Progne is a genus of birds. The genus name refers to Procne (Πρόκνη), a mythological girl who was turned into a swallow to save her from her husband. She had killed their son to avenge the rape of her sister.

Saw-wing

The saw-wings, Psalidoprocne, is a small genus of passerine birds in the swallow family. The common name of this group is derived from the rough outer edge of the outer primary feather on the wing, which is rough due to recurved barbs. The function of this is unknown. The birds are 11–17 cm long and black or black-and-white in colour. The genus has an African distribution and all species can be found foraging over forest and woodland.

Sinaloa martin

The Sinaloa martin (Progne sinaloae) is a species of bird in the family Hirundinidae.

It breeds semicolonially in sheer cliff faces within pine-oak forests of the Sierra Madre Occidental of western Mexico. Presumed migrant records also come from Belize and Guatemala. It is assumed to winter in South America.

Southern martin

The southern martin (Progne elegans) is a species of bird in the family Hirundinidae.

It is found in Argentina and southern Bolivia ; in winter it migrates to the western Amazon Basin.

Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical moist lowland forest, subtropical or tropical moist montane forest, subtropical or tropical dry lowland grassland, subtropical or tropical high-altitude grassland, and urban areas.

Stelgidopteryx

Stelgidopteryx (Baird, 1858) is a small genus of swallows. It contains two species:

Adults of both species are brown on top with lighter underparts and a slightly forked tail. They nest in cavities but do not excavate their holes or form colonies.

These birds forage in flight over water or fields, usually flying low. They eat insects.

"Rough-winged" refers to the serrated edge feathers on the wing of this genus; this feature would only be apparent in the hand.

Streak-throated swallow

The streak-throated swallow or the Indian cliff swallow (Petrochelidon fluvicola) is a species of swallow found as Native (breeder, year-round resident or winter visitor) in South Asia in the countries of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan. It occurs as a Vagrant in the Maldives, Sri Lanka, and the Middle-east.

Tumbes swallow

The Tumbes swallow (Tachycineta stolzmanni) is a species of bird in the family Hirundinidae.

It is found in northwestern Peru and far southwestern Ecuador.

Its natural habitats are dry savanna, coastal saline lagoons, and arable land.

Swallows (family: Hirundinidae)

Languages

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.