Articles on this page are available in 1 other language: Spanish (8) (learn more)

Overview

Brief Summary

The Chimney Swift (Chaetura pelagica), famously described by Roger Tory Peterson in his pioneering A Field Guide to the Birds as resembling "a cigar with wings", is one of the nine swift species in the New World genus Chaetura. Several Chaetura species, including C. pelagica, originally built their nests in hollow trees but now often nest inside chimneys or other human-built structures. The Chimney Swift is the only swift regularly occurring in eastern North America. In late summer, large flocks may be seen in the sky at dusk, giving their distinctive chattering calls. Chimney Swifts feeding on flying insects are a familiar sight in the open skies over towns and cities across the eastern United States and adjacent Canada,. Within the Chinmey Swift's range, artificial nest sites such as chimneys are far more common than suitable hollow trees.

Chimney swift courtship involves aerial displays. Nesting is often colonial and the breeding pair is often assisted by an extra adult “helper”. The nest, which is constructed by both sexes, is shaped like half a saucer and is made of twigs glued together with the birds’ saliva. Adults break off short dead twigs from trees while zooming past in flight. Clutch size is 4 to 5 white eggs (range 3 to 6). Incubation (for 19 to 21 days) is by both parents. Both parents feed young (by regurgitating insects). Young may climb out of the nest after around 20 days, clambering up vertical walls. Young typically first fly at around 28 to 30 days.

Chimney Swifts migrate in flocks, apparently during the day. They winter in eastern Peru, northern Chile, and in the upper Amazon basin of eastern Peru and northwestern Brazil.

(Kaufman 1996; AOU 1998)

  • American Ornithologists' Union. 1998. Check-list of North American Birds, 7th edition. American Ornithologists' Union, Washington, D.C.
  • Kaufman, K. 1996. Lives of North American Birds. Houghton Mifflin, Boston.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

Supplier: Leo Shapiro

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Distribution

Chimney swifts are found from central Alberta to Newfoundland, and south to Florida, the Gulf states, and eastern Texas. They are migratory, wintering at the headwaters of the Amazon in western Brazil and eastern Peru. Chimney swifts are considered accidental species in Greenland and Bermuda.

Biogeographic Regions: nearctic (Native ); neotropical (Native )

  • Palmer, E., H. Fowler. 1975. Fieldbook of Natural History, 2nd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill, Inc.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Range

breeds eastern North America; winters in coastal Peru and northern Chile, in Amazonian Peru, and probably in western Brazil.
  • Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2014. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: Version 6.9. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Range Description

Chaetura pelagica breeds in eastern North America as far north as southern Canada, and occasionally in California and Arizona (USA). It is a migratory species, wintering in eastern Ecuador, Peru, north-west Brazil and northern Chile (del Hoyo et al. 1999). The Canadian population, which occupies one quarter of the breeding range, is estimated at just 11,820 breeding individuals (COSEWIC 2007), although the global population has been estimated at 15,000,000 individuals (Rich et al. 2004). Trends have been recorded through North America between 1966 and 2007, with a decline of 5.5% per year in Canada (total decline of 90%) and 1.8% per year in the USA (total decline of 53%). Overall, during this period the population has declined by 1.9% per year, though this decline has accelerated in recent years, reaching a decline of 2.8% per year between 1980 and 2008 (Dionne et al. 2008) (total decline of 40% over this period) (Sauer et al. 2008).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Breeding

United States

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Breeding

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Range: (>2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)) BREEDING: east-central Saskatchewan east across southern Canada to Nova Scotia and probably Newfoundland, south to eastern New Mexico, southern Texas, Gulf Coast, and southern Florida, and west to southeastern Wyoming and eastern Colorado (AOU 1998). NON-BREEDING: western Peru, northern Chile, and upper Amazon basin of eastern Peru and Brazil (Stiles and Skutch 1989, AOU 1998). MIGRATION: eastern Mexico, Caribbean slope of Middle America, Colombia, and western Venezuela (AOU 1998).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Geographic Range

Chimney swifts are native to the Nearctic and Neotropical regions. They are found in North and South America, ranging from central Alberta to Newfoundland, then south to Florida, the Gulf States, and eastern Texas. They also migrate, spending the winters at the headwaters of the Amazon in western Brazil and eastern Peru. They are sometimes seen in Greenland and Bermuda.

Biogeographic Regions: nearctic (Native ); neotropical (Native )

  • Palmer, E., H. Fowler. 1975. Fieldbook of Natural History, 2nd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill, Inc.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Morphology

In general, chimney swifts are a dark grayish to brownish-gray, sooty color. Males and females look alike. The tail has stiff bristle-like or spiny feather tips (Palmer and Fowler, 1975; Whittemore, 1981). There may be as many as seven tail spines (Chantler and Driessens, 2000). They have been described as resembling a "flying cigar" (Palmer and Fowler, 1975). Chimney swifts have large eyes. They weigh 21.33 g on average. Wing length averages 130.4 mm and tail length averages 39.1 mm (Chantler and Driessens, 2000).

Average mass: 21.33 g.

Sexual Dimorphism: sexes alike

Other Physical Features: endothermic ; bilateral symmetry

Average mass: 22.8 g.

  • Whittemore, M. 1981. Chimney Swifts and Their Relatives. Jackson, MS: Nature Books Publishers.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Chimney swifts are small birds with wing length averaging 130.4 mm and tail length averaging 39.1 mm. They weigh approximately 21 grams. The bird's body and head are dark grayish to brownish-gray color on the upper part, slightly paler below. The tail has stiff bristle-like or spiny feather tips. There may be as many as seven tail spines. The eyes of chimney swifts are large. In flight these birds are described as looking like a "cigar with wings." Male and female birds look the same.

Average mass: 21.33 g.

Sexual Dimorphism: sexes alike

Average mass: 22.8 g.

  • Whittemore, M. 1981. Chimney Swifts and Their Relatives. Jackson, MS: Nature Books Publishers.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Size

Length: 13 cm

Weight: 24 grams

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Ecology

Habitat

In temperate zones, chimney swifts are found most often in areas settled by humans. In the tropics, they are also found near irrigated agricultural lands and areas inhabited by humans. In natural tropical settings, chimney swifts are found at the edge of rivers bordered by forest or the edge of lowland evergreen forests and secondary growth scrub, and even over the Andean valleys in Peru and Ecuador. They can be found at elevations of 2500 m.

Range elevation: 2500 (high) m.

Habitat Regions: temperate ; tropical ; terrestrial

Terrestrial Biomes: forest ; rainforest ; scrub forest ; mountains

Other Habitat Features: suburban ; agricultural ; riparian

  • Chantler, P., G. Driessens. 2000. Swifts: A Guide to the Swifts and Treeswifts of the World, 2nd. ed. Sussex: Pica Press.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Behaviour This migratory species is extremely gregarious, and typically nests in chimneys, though other structures such as hollow tree trunks can be used (del Hoyo et al. 1999, COSEWIC 2007). Eggs have been recorded from May to July, though the precise timing varies slightly throughout its range. A clutch of two to seven eggs is laid, and extra-parental co-operation is well established. It is present in North America until September (del Hoyo et al. 1999). Habitat It is readily associated with urban settings, though also forages and breeds over a variety of natural habitats over its wide range. Main habitats include river-edge forest, the edge of tropical lowland evergreen forest and second-growth scrub. It can also be found along the coast in Peru, up to 3,000 m over irrigated farmland in western Andean valleys, and even in central city zones (del Hoyo et al. 1999). Diet Spiders, along with Hymenoptera spp., Diptera spp. and other insects have been recorded (del Hoyo et al. 1999).


Systems
  • Terrestrial
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Comments: Cosmopolitan; inhabits rural and urban environments having both an abundance of flying arthropods and suitable roosting/nesting sites. Nests principally in chimneys, but also on the interior walls of a variety of other anthropogenic structures including silos, barns, outhouses, uninhabited houses, boathouses, wells, and cisterns (Bent 1940). Natural nest sites include the interior of hollow tree trunks and branches, Pileated Woodpecker cavities and rock shelters (Bent 1940, Fisher 1958, Hofslund 1958). Trees in which nests have been found include American Beech (FAGUS GRANDIFOLIA), Yellow Birch (BETULA LUTEA), Silver Maple (ACER SACCHARINUM), Sycamore (PLATANUS OCCIDENTALIS), Bald Cypress (TAXODIUM DISTICHUM), and Water Tupelo (NYSSA AQUATICA; Blodgett and Zammuto 1979, Fischer 1958, Hofslund 1958, Mumford and Keller 1984, Stevenson and Anderson 1994). Due to the prevalence of nesting structures in areas populated by humans, often occurs at higher densities in anthropogenic environments than natural ones (i.e., forests; Beissinger and Osborne 1982). Migrating flocks roost overnight principally in chimneys, but also in hollow trees or, rarely, even exposed on tree trunks (Bent 1940, Spendelow 1985).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

In temperate zones, chimney swifts are found most often in areas settled by humans. In the tropics, they are also found near irrigated agricultural lands and areas inhabited by humans. In natural tropical settings, chimney swifts are found at the edge of rivers bordered by forest or the edge of lowland evergreen forests and secondary growth scrub, and even over the Andean valleys in Peru and Ecuador. They can be found at elevations of 2500 m.

Range elevation: 2500 (high) m.

Habitat Regions: temperate ; tropical ; terrestrial

Terrestrial Biomes: forest ; rainforest ; scrub forest ; mountains

Other Habitat Features: suburban ; agricultural ; riparian

  • Chantler, P., G. Driessens. 2000. Swifts: A Guide to the Swifts and Treeswifts of the World, 2nd. ed. Sussex: Pica Press.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Migration

Non-Migrant: No. All populations of this species make significant seasonal migrations.

Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make local extended movements (generally less than 200 km) at particular times of the year (e.g., to breeding or wintering grounds, to hibernation sites).

Locally Migrant: Yes. At least some populations of this species make annual migrations of over 200 km.

PHENOLOGY: Migrates northward, often in small flocks, through North America from mid-March through May. Migrates southward in August and September in large flocks (Stokes 1979). Migrates diurnally (Bent 1940).

ROUTES: A trans-Gulf migrant; the vast majority of individuals apparently cross the Gulf of Mexico between the United States and Mexico. A second migration pathway over the West Indies is apparently little used (Lowery 1943). Raffaele (1989) consider it an extremely rare migrant over the Virgin Islands. Migrates through Costa Rica along the Caribbean coast from mid-March to late April and from early October through early November (Stiles and Skutch 1989). As they migrate through Costa Rica, thousands may gather into feeding flocks over open areas during stormy weather, sometimes in the company of other swifts (Stiles and Skutch 1989).

FLOCK SIZE: A flock migrating over Kingston, Ontario on 14 May 1947 was estimated to contain 10,000 individuals (Bowman 1952). One fall flock, roosting in a hollow Sycamore tree, was estimated to contain 9000 individuals, and another, roosting in a chimney, contained an estimated 12,620 individuals (Bent 1940, Groskin 1945).

MIGRATION SPEED: Travels approximately 100 kilometers per day during migration (Bowman 1952). An individual banded at Kingston, Ontario on 2 September 1928 was recovered 12 days later at Charleston, West Virginia (traveled approximately 62 kilometers per day). Another individual, banded at Lexington, Missouri in September, arrived at Baton Rouge, Louisiana 3 days later (a travel rate of approximately 324 kilometers per day). A swift banded at Baton Rouge, Louisiana was captured 750 kilometers to the north 5 days later (an average of 150 kilometers per day). Another swift banded at Chattanooga, Tennessee was recovered 160 kilometers away on the same day (Bowman 1952). An individual banded at London, Ontario, was captured 12 days later at Knoxville, Tennessee (an average of 67 kilometers per day; Hitchcock 1945). Prior to fall migration, pre-migratory flocks (apparently composed of local individuals) form (Fischer 1958, Michael and Chao 1973).

WINTERING: Winters in the upper Amazon River basin from western Peru to Bolivia and central Brazil (Lincoln 1944, Stiles and Skutch 1989, Terres 1991).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Trophic Strategy

Chimney swifts feed exclusively while in flight. They are primarily insectivores (Palmer and Fowler, 1975). They forage by hovering over tree branches and catching insects in flight; they take a variety of insect and spider prey. Forty to fifty chimney swifts were recorded hovering at the outer branches or diving through the top branches of a sweetgum tree in pursuit of a particular species of weevil (Chantler and Driessen, 2000).

Animal Foods: insects; terrestrial non-insect arthropods

Primary Diet: carnivore (Insectivore , Eats non-insect arthropods)

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Comments: Forages for arthropods, principally flying insects, while in flight (Terres 1991). With rare exceptions, foraging is diurnal (Bent 1940, Oberholser 1974). Occasionally picks insects off tips of tree branches (Fischer 1958). Fischer (1958) examined over 1000 insects fed to young in New York. Principal food items (95%), in decreasing order of frequency, included Diptera, Homoptera, Hymenoptera, Ephemeroptera, and Plecoptera. The remainder of the diet was composed of Coleoptera, Hemiptera, Trichoptera, Siphonaptera, and Arachnids. Fleas (Siphonaptera) inhabiting the nest may have entered the diet accidentally (Fischer 1958). At times the diet is comprised overwhelmingly of one insect group or species, apparently the result of selection of insects when locally abundant (Fischer 1958). Bent (1940) also reported that insects are the principal prey items, including agricultural pests such as the potato beetle (LEMA TRILINEATA) and the tarnished plant bug (LYGUS PRATENSIS). Wanders a mile (1.6 km) or more from the nest when foraging (Fischer 1958). One individual was observed attempting to steal a dragonfly (Odonata) from the beak of a flying Purple Martin (PROGNE SUBIS; Brown 1980). Water is obtained on the wing by skimming low over bodies of water (Oberholser 1974).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Food Habits

Chimney swifts feed exclusively while in flight. They are primarily insectivores. They forage by hovering over tree branches and catching insects in flight; they take a variety of insect and spider prey. Forty to fifty chimney swifts were recorded hovering at the outer branches or diving through the top branches of a sweetgum tree in pursuit of a particular species of weevil.

Animal Foods: insects; terrestrial non-insect arthropods

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Associations

As insectivores chimney swifts affect insect populations throughout their range.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Chimney swifts are occasionally eaten by hawks and falcons.

Known Predators:

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Ecosystem Roles

As insectivores chimney swifts affect insect populations throughout their range.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Predation

Chimney swifts are occasionally eaten by Accipitridae and Falconidae.

Known Predators:

  • hawks (Accipitridae)
  • falcons (Falconidae)

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Known predators

Chaetura pelagica is prey of:
Accipitridae

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© SPIRE project

Source: SPIRE

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Known prey organisms

Chaetura pelagica preys on:
non-insect arthropods
Arthropoda
Insecta

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© SPIRE project

Source: SPIRE

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

General Ecology

MATE/SITE FIDELITY: Exhibits mate and site fidelity, and normally mates for life (Dexter 1951b, Dexter 1992). In Ohio, 84.5% of nesting swifts under observation retained the same mate when both returned for nesting, and 96% of the pairs that returned and nested together occupied the same air shaft used in the previous year (Dexter 1992). In New York, two pairs mated for three successive summers and five pairs mated for two successive summers (Fischer 1958). Sixty-two percent of banded adults returned to the New York study area and of these 70.5% returned to their previous nest site (Fischer 1958). In Kingston, Ontario, 9.7% of banded bird returned to the study area (Bowman 1952). One bird, banded at Rome, Georgia was subsequently captured at Kent, Ohio, then captured again at Rome (Dexter 1979). In New York, 11% of birds banded as nestlings returned to the study area, and 70% of these returned to their natal site to breed (Fischer 1958).

WEATHER: The time interval between visits to feed young increases at temperatures above or below 21-24 C, and on windy or rainy days (Zammuto et al. 1981). Most individuals leave the roost during light levels of 0-0.65 lux, and return to roost at light levels of 0-0.19 lux (Zammuto and Franks 1981). On cold, rainy mornings, emergence from the roost is either delayed or birds soon return after leaving. On windy days, birds leave the roost earlier and return later than on calm days (Zammuto and Franks 1981). Relatively cold or warm temperatures, wind, and rain all reduce flying insect abundance and apparently decrease swift foraging efficiency (Zammuto and Franks 1981, Zammuto et al. 1981).

POPULATION PARAMETERS: At Kingston, 177 banded swifts were still alive six years after banding (Bowman 1952). Annual mortality is estimated to be 50% (Fischer 1958). Lives to be 14 years old (Terres 1991).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life History and Behavior

Behavior

Chimney swift calls are described as a twitter (Palmer and Fowler, 1975). The most common twitterings are accelerating and decelerating chipping (Chantler and Driessens, 2000).

Chimney swifts also are likely to use touch and vision in communication. They perceive their environment through vision, hearing, touch, and a weakly developed sense of smell.

Communication Channels: visual ; tactile ; acoustic

Perception Channels: visual ; tactile ; acoustic ; chemical

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Communication and Perception

Chimney swift calls are described as a twitter. The most common twitterings are accelerating and decelerating chipping.

Chimney swifts also are likely to use touch and vision in communication. They perceive their environment through vision, hearing, touch, and a weakly developed sense of smell.

Communication Channels: visual ; tactile ; acoustic

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Life Expectancy

A female chimney swift was recorded to have lived ten years (Dexter, 1956).

Range lifespan

Status: wild:
10 (high) years.

Average lifespan

Status: wild:
168 months.

  • Dexter, R. 1956. Ten-year life history of a banded Chimney Swift. The Auk, 73: 276-280.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Lifespan/Longevity

A female chimney swift was recorded to have lived ten years.

Range lifespan

Status: wild:
10 (high) years.

Average lifespan

Status: wild:
168 months.

  • Dexter, R. 1956. Ten-year life history of a banded Chimney Swift. The Auk, 73: 276-280.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Lifespan, longevity, and ageing

Maximum longevity: 15 years (wild) Observations: Few animals live more than 4 years (John Terres 1980).
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Joao Pedro de Magalhaes

Source: AnAge

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Reproduction

Chimney swifts are monogamous; records indicate that some chimney swifts will remain with the same mate for up to eight or nine years.

Mating System: monogamous

The breeding season for chimney swifts is from May to July. Nests are placed in the dark in chimneys and occasionally in hollow trees. The basket-like, half-cup nest consists of sticks and is secured to the wall of a chimney by secreted mucilage (saliva). It is usually at least 15.5 m off the ground, but this can vary greatly (Palmer and Fowler, 1975; Whittemore, 1981; Chantler and Driessens, 2000).

Three to seven white, somewhat glossy eggs are laid per clutch (Palmer and Fowler, 1975; Whittemore, 1981; Chantler and Driessens, 2000). Each egg is approximately 2.0 by 1.3 cm. Both parents incubate the eggs (Palmer and Fowler, 1975), and the incubation period is from 19 to 21 days (Chantler and Driessens, 2000). Females will cover the eggs or young at night. Nestlings may leave the nest 14 to 19 days after hatching, but the first flight typically occurs 30 days after hatching (Chantler and Driessens, 2000). Chimney swifts can have more than one brood per season, and will re-nest if the first nest and eggs are destroyed (Whittemore, 1981).

Some nesting colonies can be quite large, made up of thousands of individuals (Chantler and Driessens, 2000). The size of the nesting colony depends on the size of the roosting site; usually there are a few pairs to a few hundred birds in a colony (Dexter, 1969; Chantler and Driessens, 2000).

Breeding interval: Chimney swifts breed once yearly, but occasionally have more than one brood per season.

Breeding season: Breeding occurs from May to July.

Range eggs per season: 4 to 7.

Average eggs per season: 5.

Range time to hatching: 19 to 21 days.

Range fledging age: 14 to 19 days.

Key Reproductive Features: iteroparous ; seasonal breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); sexual ; fertilization ; oviparous

Average eggs per season: 4.

Young chimney swifts are altricial and are fed by both parents.

Sometimes birds other than the breeding pair will help feed and care for young, a behavior called extra-parental cooperation or cooperative breeding. Chimney swifts are known to form cooperative breeding groups of three to four birds. These groups may remain as a nesting unit throughout the season, sharing incubation, brooding, and feeding duties (Dexter, 1952; Chantler and Driessens, 2000). Records indicate that one colony had more than one-third of the breeding pairs form cooperative groups; there were 22 threesomes and 6 foursomes (Dexter, 1952).

Parental Investment: no parental involvement; altricial ; pre-fertilization; pre-hatching/birth (Protecting); pre-weaning/fledging (Provisioning: Male, Female)

  • Chantler, P., G. Driessens. 2000. Swifts: A Guide to the Swifts and Treeswifts of the World, 2nd. ed. Sussex: Pica Press.
  • Dexter, R. 1952. Extra-parental cooperation in the nesting of Chimney Swifts. The Wilson Bulletin, 64(3): 133-139.
  • Dexter, R. 1969. Banding and nesting studies of the Chimney Swift, 1944-1968. The Ohio Journal of Science, 69(4): 193-213.
  • Palmer, E., H. Fowler. 1975. Fieldbook of Natural History, 2nd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill, Inc.
  • Whittemore, M. 1981. Chimney Swifts and Their Relatives. Jackson, MS: Nature Books Publishers.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Most individuals do not nest until two-years old (Dexter 1981a, Fischer 1958).

OVIPOSTION/INCUBATION: Eggs are laid from May through July (Terres 1991). Nests are constructed of dead twigs broken off trees while birds are in flight (Shelley 1929) and glued to the interior wall of a hollow anthropogenic or natural structures with saliva (Bent 1940, Fischer 1958). Old nests are rarely re-used (Dexter 1962, Dexter 1981b). Egg-laying begins when the nest is approximately half finished. Egg are laid every other day and incubation begins after the penultimate egg is laid. Clutch size typically ranges from 2-6 eggs (average = 4.3), but as many as 8 eggs have been found in one nest. Nests containing more than six eggs may be the result of oviposition by two females. Incubation typically takes 19 days, but ranges from 16-21 days. Will re-lay if first clutch is lost (Fischer 1958). One female, studied over a 10-year period, laid a total of 34 eggs (3-5 eggs per clutch, mean = 4.25, n = 8) and fledged 27 young (0-4 young per year, mean = 3, n = 9; Dexter 1956). Clutch size of first-year nesting females (2-5 eggs, mean 3.5) studied in Ohio was smaller than subsequent clutches (3-7, mean 4.1; Dexter 1981a). Both sexes incubate the eggs and brood and feed the young. An additional adult or two sometimes assist parents with incubation, brooding and feeding of young (Dexter 1952a, Fischer 1958). The extra adult is most often a male (Dexter 1952a, Dexter 1981a). Whereas extra adults enhanced nesting success of first-year nesting females, they had no influence on nesting success of older females (Dexter 1981a).

FLEDGING: Young leave the nest, but remain nearby, at 14-19 days old. Juveniles typically first fly 30 days after hatching.

NEST SUCCESS: Hatching success for 20 nests studied in New York was 90.7%, and fledging success, as defined as young that survived to fly outdoors, was 86% (Fischer 1958). Adults continue to care for young washed out of the nest and, in some cases, the young survive to fledge (Dexter 1952b).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Chimney swifts are monogamous; records indicate that some chimney swifts will remain with the same mate for up to eight or nine years.

Mating System: monogamous

Chimney swifts gather together to breed in colonies. Some nesting colonies can be quite large, including thousands of individuals. The exact number of individuals varies depending on the size of the nesting area.

Chimney swifts build their nests in chimneys or hollow trees. The basket-like, half-cup nest is made of sticks secured to the inner wall of a chimney or tree by the hardened saliva of the swifts. The nest is usually placed at least 15.5 m off the ground, but this can vary greatly. A female lays 3 to 7 white, glossy eggs per clutch. Each egg is approximately 2.0 by 1.3 cm. Both parents help incubate the eggs, which means that they will take turns sitting on the nest to keep the eggs warm until they hatch.  Nestlings may leave the nest 14 to 19 days after hatching but the first flight typically occurs 30 days after hatching. Chimney swifts probably reach sexual maturity (have the ability to breed) one year after they have left the nest.

Breeding interval: Chimney swifts breed once yearly, but occasionally have more than one brood per season.

Breeding season: Breeding occurs from May to July.

Range eggs per season: 4 to 7.

Average eggs per season: 5.

Range time to hatching: 19 to 21 days.

Range fledging age: 14 to 19 days.

Key Reproductive Features: seasonal breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); fertilization

Average eggs per season: 4.

Young chimney swifts are helpless when hatched and are fed by both parents.

Sometimes birds other than the breeding pair will help feed and care for young, a behavior called cooperative breeding. Chimney swifts are known to form cooperative breeding groups of three to four birds. These groups may remain as a nesting unit throughout the season, sharing incubation, brooding, and feeding duties. Records indicate that one colony had more than one-third of the breeding pairs form cooperative groups; there were 22 threesomes and 6 foresomes.

Parental Investment: no parental involvement; altricial ; pre-fertilization; pre-hatching/birth (Protecting); pre-weaning/fledging (Provisioning: Male, Female)

  • Chantler, P., G. Driessens. 2000. Swifts: A Guide to the Swifts and Treeswifts of the World, 2nd. ed. Sussex: Pica Press.
  • Dexter, R. 1952. Extra-parental cooperation in the nesting of Chimney Swifts. The Wilson Bulletin, 64(3): 133-139.
  • Dexter, R. 1969. Banding and nesting studies of the Chimney Swift, 1944-1968. The Ohio Journal of Science, 69(4): 193-213.
  • Palmer, E., H. Fowler. 1975. Fieldbook of Natural History, 2nd ed. New York: McGraw-Hill, Inc.
  • Whittemore, M. 1981. Chimney Swifts and Their Relatives. Jackson, MS: Nature Books Publishers.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Chaetura pelagica

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


There are 3 barcode sequences available from BOLD and GenBank.

Below is a sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species.

See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen and other sequences.

NNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNTATAGTAGGAACTGCCCTCAGCCTACTTATCCGAGCAGAGCTTGGACAACCAGGGACTCTCCTAGGAGATGATCAAATCTACAACGTAATCGTTACTGCCCACGCTTTTGTAATAATCTTCTTCATAGTTATACCAATTATGATCGGAGGATTTGGAAACTGACTAGTCCCACTTATAATTGGAGCACCTGACATAGCCTTCCCACGAATAAACAATATAAGCTTTTGACTTCTTCCCCCATCATTCCTCCTCCTACTAGCCTCCTCAACAGTTGAAGCAGGAGCAGGAACAGGCTGAACCGTATACCCTCCACTAGCCGGCAATCTAGCCCACGCAGGAGCATCAGTTGACCTCGCTATCTTCTCCCTCCACCTAGCAGGGGTCTCCTCCATCCTAGGTGCAATCAACTTTATCACAACTGCCATCAATATAAAACCACCTGCCCTCTCACAATACCAAACACCCCTATTCGTATGATCCGTCCTCATTACCGCCGTCCTACTACTCCTCTCCCTCCCCGTCCTCGCTGCAGGCATCACTATACTCTTAACTGACCGTAACCTAAACACCACATTCTTCGACCCAGCCGGAGGAGGTGACCCCATCTTATACCAACACCTATTCTGATTCTTTGGCCACCCAGAAGTCTACATCCTAATTCTA
-- end --

Download FASTA File

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Chaetura pelagica

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 4
Specimens with Barcodes: 5
Species With Barcodes: 1
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Conservation

Conservation Status

Chimney swifts have been described as being as peaceful as doves and always worthy of protection (Whittemore, 1981). They are protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, but are not listed by CITES, US ESA or the IUCN.

US Migratory Bird Act: protected

US Federal List: no special status

CITES: no special status

State of Michigan List: no special status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: near threatened

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
NT
Near Threatened

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2012

Assessor/s
BirdLife International

Reviewer/s
Butchart, S. & Symes, A.

Contributor/s
Windingstad, R.

Justification
This species is classified as Near Threatened as survey data has demonstrated that it has undergone a moderately rapid population decline due to loss of nesting habitat. However, trends for three-generation periods ending in 2006, 2007 and 2009 have reached 32%, 31% and 30% respectively, and should these rates of declines continue, the species may be uplisted to Vulnerable.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: N4B - Apparently Secure

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: N5B - Secure

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Chimney swifts have been described as being as peaceful as doves and always worthy of protection. They are protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, but are not listed by CITES, US ESA or the IUCN.

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: near threatened

US Migratory Bird Act: protected

US Federal List: no special status

CITES: no special status

State of Michigan List: no special status

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Population

Population
The global population size has been estimated to number 15,000,000 individuals.

Population Trend
Decreasing
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Threats

Major Threats
The most significant threat to the species appears to be the decreasing number of nesting and roosting sites caused by logging operations, the demolition of old abandoned buildings and, especially, the sharp decline in the number of suitable and accessible traditional chimneys, which are this species's main breeding habitat (COSEWIC 2007, R. Windingstad in litt. 2010). It is projected that very few suitable sites will remain within the next thirty years (COSEWIC 2007). The number of breeding sites in Quebec is limited, and it is estimated that only 60% of breeding-age adults actually reproduce; a trend which is thought to be replicated across Canada (COSEWIC 2007). Hurricanes during the migration period and harsh weather conditions during breeding season have caused a considerable number of deaths (COSEWIC 2007, Dionne et al. 2008). In its South American wintering area, the species is threatened by intensive logging operations and by fires (COSEWIC 2007).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Comments: HABITAT CHANGE: In Texas, construction of homes without fireplaces and the screening of chimneys is thought to have slowed the expansion of the swift within the state (Oberholser 1974). Chimney screening and demolition of buildings (businesses, homes, silos) historically used for nesting/roosting can eliminate important habitat. The loss of historic roosts used by 1000s of individuals during fall migration could be devastating if alternate sites are unavailable. The surface of metal flue pipe emplaced within newly-constructed chimneys is too smooth for swifts to cling to, resulting in the entrapment and death of birds. PREDATION: Confirmed predators of adults include Mississippi Kites (ICTINIA MISSISSIPPIENSIS; Bolen and Flores 1993) and Sharp-shinned Hawks (ACCIPITER STRIATUS; Bent 1940); nestlings are preyed upon by Rat Snakes (ELAPHE OBSOLETA; Cink 1990). OTHER: Large flocks roosting in chimneys are sometimes accidentally killed. Between 3000 and 5000 swifts were killed in October in a chimney in Quincy, Illinois when the heat was turned on due to unseasonably cold weather (Bent 1940). Prolonged periods of wet, cold weather during the spring, which decrease flying insect abundance, can result in starvation (Bent 1940). Birds sometimes also starve during migration (Spendelow 1985). Threats on the wintering grounds are unknown.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Conservation Actions Underway
Listed as a Threatened species in Canada (COSEWIC 2007). Populations continue to be monitored as part of the Breeding Birds Survey.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Research potential measures to prevent further population declines. Assess threats in South America.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Restoration Potential: Readily adapts to anthropogenic structures for nesting and roosting; therefore likely to establish in new or historic localities with the construction of buildings that provide sunlight-excluding, vertical, rough-surfaced shafts.

Preserve Selection and Design Considerations: Suitable nesting habitat includes appropriate nest structures (vertical shafts that exclude sunlight) and an abundance of flying insect prey. Minimum area requirements are unknown, although known to forage a mile (1.6 km) or more from the nest (Fischer 1958).

Management Requirements: Dark, vertical shafts having rough interior surfaces that facilitate roosting (e.g., chimneys, hollow trees) are essential for nesting and roosting. Chimneys with smooth surfaces (e.g., metal flue pipe) should be capped to prevent swift entrapment. Chimneys should be kept free of creosote (clean before birds return from wintering grounds) as creosote build-up increases the likelihood of nest detachment from the chimney wall. The chimney damper should be kept closed during the nesting season to prevent swifts from entering the building (Kyle and Kyle 1999).

Management Research Needs: Determining trends in the use of chimney screening and the construction of new homes having chimneys with rough interior surfaces would be useful in assessing breeding habitat availability. Need to study winter ecology, determine the influence of flying insect abundance and unseasonably cold or prolonged wet weather on reproductive success, and research design and construction of artificial nest sites. Need to identify important factors that regulate populations, including any impact the use of insecticides may have on reproductive success or survival.

Biological Research Needs: Winter ecology needs study.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

There are no known adverse affects of chimney swifts on humans.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Chimney swifts are valuable as erradicators of insect pests.

Positive Impacts: controls pest population

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Economic Importance for Humans: Negative

There are no known adverse affects of chimney swifts on humans.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Economic Importance for Humans: Positive

Chimney swifts are valuable as erradicators of insect pests.

Positive Impacts: controls pest population

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Risks

Stewardship Overview: As determined by North American Breeding Bird Survey, population is declining, particularly at the northern edge of its range. Factors contributing to the decline are unknown, but could include loss of breeding structures, prolonged cold or wet weather that could result in starvation of nestlings, or unidentified threats on the wintering grounds. Reproduction requires a combination of suitable nesting habitat and an abundance of flying insects. Management includes retaining chimneys as habitat and the construction of artificial nesting/roosting structures. Need to implement population monitoring programs to supplement data collected during Breeding Bird Surveys.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Wikipedia

Chimney swift

The chimney swift (Chaetura pelagica) is a bird belonging to the swift family Apodidae. A member of the genus Chaetura, it is closely related to both the Vaux's swift and the Chapman's swift; in the past, the three were sometimes considered to be conspecific. It has no subspecies.

Taxonomy and systematics[edit]

When he first described the chimney swift in 1758, Carl Linnaeus named it Hirundo pelagica, believing it to be a swallow.[2] This misconception continued well into the 1800s, with ornithologists calling it "American Swallow" (e.g. Mark Catesby)[4] or "Chimney Swallow" (e.g. John James Audubon).[5] In 1825, James Francis Stephens moved this and other small, short-tailed New World swifts to the genus Chaetura, where it has since remained, although some authorities in the 1800s assigned it to a variety of now obsolete genera.[6] It has no subspecies.[7] The chimney swift's closest relative is the Vaux's swift. Scientists believe that the two species evolved from a common ancestor that was forced to North America's southeastern and southwestern corners by glacial advances. Separated for centuries by vast ice sheets, the survivors evolved into two species which are still separated by a wide gap across the continent's midsection.[8] It is also closely related to the Chapman's swift; in the past, the three were sometimes treated as a single species.[9]

The chimney swift's genus name, Chaetura, is a combination of two Greek words: chaite, which means "bristle" or "spine", and oura which means "tail". This is an apt description of the bird's tail, as the shafts of all ten tail feathers (rectrices) end in sharp, protruding points.[10] The specific name pelagica is derived from the Greek word pelagikos, which means "of the sea".[11] This is thought to be a reference to its nomadic lifestyle rather than to any reference to the sea,[12] a theory strengthened by the later assignment of the specific name pelasgia (after the nomadic Pelasgi tribe of ancient Greece) to the same species by other ornithologists.[11] Its common name refers to its preferred nesting site and its speedy flight.[13]

History of observation[edit]

In 1899, Mary Day of New Jersey observed a pair of chimney swifts nesting in a chimney, and noted the incubation period was 19 days. The first detailed study of Chimney Swifts began in 1915 by self-taught ornithologist Althea Sherman in Iowa. She commissioned a 28 foot tall tower, of a similar design to a chimney, with ladders and peep holes installed to ease observation. Chimney swifts nested in her tower, and for over fifteen years, she meticulously recorded her observations, filling over 400 pages.[14] Sherman remarked that although the tower had been designed with a limited knowledge of the nesting behaviour of chimney swifts, after many years of observation she believed that the original design was ideal.[15]

Description[edit]

This is a medium-sized swift, measuring from 12 to 15 cm (4.7 to 5.9 in) in length,[nb 1] with a wingspan of 27 to 30 cm (11 to 12 in) and a weight ranging from 17 to 30 g (0.60 to 1.06 oz).[17] The sexes are identical in plumage,[18] though males average slightly heavier than females.[18] The adult's plumage is a dark sooty olive above and grayish brown below, with a slightly paler rump and uppertail covert feathers, and a significantly paler throat.[19] Its upperparts are the most uniformly colored of all the Chaetura swifts, showing little contrast between back and rump.[20] Its beak is black, as are its feet and legs. Its iris is dark brown.[21] Juvenal plumage (that held by juvenile birds) is very similar to that of adults, but with whitish tips to the outer webs of the secondaries and tertials.[22]

The chimney swift's wings are slender, curved and long,[23] extending as much as 1.5 in (3.8 cm) beyond the bird's tail when folded.[24] Its wingtips are pointed, which helps to decrease air turbulence (and therefore drag) during flight.[25] Its humerus (the bone in the inner part of the wing) is quite short, while the bones farther out (more distally) along the wing are elongated, a combination which allows the bird to flap very quickly.[26] In flight, it holds its wings stiffly, alternating between rapid, quivering flaps and longer glides. Its flight profile is widely described as a "cigar with wings"—a description first used by Roger Tory Peterson.[23] Although the bird often appears to beat its wings asynchronously during flight, photographic and stroboscopic studies have shown that it beats them in unison. The illusion that it does otherwise is heightened by its very fast and highly erratic flight, with many rapid changes of direction.[27]

The legs of the chimney swift, like those of all swifts, are very short.[28] Its feet are small but strong, with very short toes that are tipped with sharp, curved claws.[26] The toes are anisodactyl—three forward, one back—like those of most birds, but the chimney swift can swivel its back toe (its hallux) forward to help it get a better grip. Unlike the legs and feet of most birds, those of the chimney swift have no scales; instead, they are covered with smooth skin.[10]

Its tail is short and square,[29] measuring only 1.90–2.15 in (4.8–5.5 cm) in length.[21] All ten of its tail feathers have shafts which extend as much as 0.5 in (1.3 cm) beyond the vanes, ending in sharp, stiff points.[10] These help the bird to prop itself against vertical surfaces.[30]

The chimney swift has large, deep set eyes. These are protected by small patches of coarse, black, bristly feathers, which are located in front of each eye. The swift can change the angle of these feathers, which may help to reduce glare. It is far-sighted and, like some birds of prey, this swift is bifoveal: each eye having both a temporal and a central fovea.[nb 2] These are small depressions in the retina where visual acuity is highest,[31] and help to make its vision especially acute.[32] Like most vertebrates, it is able to focus both eyes at once; however, it is also able to focus a single eye independently.[31]

Its bill is very small, with a culmen that measures a mere 5 mm (0.20 in) in length.[33] However, its gape is huge, extending back below its eyes, and allowing the bird to open its mouth very widely.[34] Unlike many insectivorous birds, it lacks rictal bristles at the base of the beak.[35]

Similar species[edit]

The chimney swift looks very much like the closely related Vaux's swift, but is slightly larger, with relatively longer wings and tail, slower wingbeats[36] and a greater tendency to soar.[29] It tends to be darker on the breast and rump than the Vaux's swift, though there is some overlap in plumage coloring.[36] It can be as much as 30 percent heavier than the Vaux's swift, and its wings, which are proportionately narrower, show a pronounced bulge in the inner secondaries.[37] The chimney swift is smaller, paler and shorter tailed than the black swift.[36] In Central America, it is most similar to the Chapman's swift, but it is paler (matte olive rather than glossy black) and has a stronger contrast between its pale throat and the rest of its underparts than does the more uniformly colored Chapman's swift.[19]

Range and habitat[edit]

Chimney swifts, like these in a chimney in Missouri, USA, roost communally when not breeding.

A widespread breeding visitor to much of the eastern half of the United States and the southern reaches of eastern Canada, the chimney swift migrates to South America for the winter. It is a rare summer visitor to the western U.S,[38] and has been recorded as a vagrant in Anguilla, Barbados, Greenland, Jamaica, Portugal, the United Kingdom and the U.S. Virgin Islands.[1] It is found over open country, savanna, wooded slopes and humid forest.[39]

The chimney swift's wintering grounds were only discovered in 1944, when bands from birds banded (ringed) in North America were recovered in Peru.[40] An indigenous Peruvian had been wearing the bands as a necklace.[41]

Behavior[edit]

The chimney swift is a gregarious species, and is seldom seen alone. It generally hunts in groups of two or three, migrates in loose flocks of 6–20, and (once the breeding season is over) sleeps in huge communal roosts of hundreds or thousands of birds.[23] Like all swifts, it is a superb aerialist, and only rarely seen at rest. It drinks on the wing, skimming the surface of the water with its beak.[42] It also bathes on the wing, gliding above the surface of a body of water, briefly smacking its breast into the water, then flying off again, shaking its feathers as it goes.[17] It is incapable of perching upright like most birds do; instead, it clings to vertical surfaces.[36] If it is disturbed while at rest, the chimney swift will clap its wings loudly once or twice against its body; it does this either in place, or while dropping down several feet to a lower location. This behavior can result in a loud "thundering" sound if large roosts of the birds are disturbed. The sound is thought to be the bird's way of scaring away potential predators.[43]

Feeding[edit]

Like all swifts, the chimney swift forages on the wing.[17] Studies have shown that 95 percent of its food items are flying insects, including various species of flies, ants, wasps, bees, whiteflies, aphids, scale insects, stoneflies and mayflies. It also eats airborne spiders drifting on their threads.[42] It is an important predator of pest species such as the red imported fire ant[44] and the clover root curculio.[45] Researchers estimate that a pair of adults provisioning a nest with three youngsters consume the weight equivalent of at least 5000–6000 housefly-sized insects per day.[46]

During the breeding season, at least half of the chimney swift's forays occur within 0.5 km (0.31 mi) of its nest; however, it ranges up to 6 km (3.7 mi) away.[47] While most of its food is seized following aerial pursuit, some is gleaned from the foliage of trees; the bird hovers near the ends of branches or drops through upper canopy levels.[48] The chimney swift generally flies quite high, though it descends during cold or rainy weather.[49] When feeding, it regularly occurs in small groups, and sometimes hunts with swallows, particularly Barn Swallows and Purple Martins;[23] in mixed-species flocks, it is typically among the lower fliers.[33] There is at least one record of a chimney swift attempting to steal a dragonfly from a Purple Martin, and it has been observed chasing other Purple Martins.[50] In general, it is a diurnal feeder which remains active into early evening. However, there are records, particularly during migration periods, of chimney swifts feeding well after dark over brightly lit buildings.[51]

The species shows two weight peaks each year: one at the start of the breeding season, and a higher one shortly before it begins its migration south in the autumn. Its lowest weights are typically recorded during the breeding season, when it also begins a complete molt of its plumage. The chimney swift's weight gain before migration is smaller than that of some passerines, suggesting that it must refuel en route at various stopover points.[52]

Breeding[edit]

The nest is made of small, short twigs glued together with saliva.

The chimney swift is a monogamous breeder which normally mates for life, though a small percentage of birds change partners.[53] Pairs perform display flights together, gliding with their wings upraised in a steep "V", and sometimes rocking from side to side. Breeding birds arrive as early as mid March in the southern U.S., and as late as mid-May in the Canadian provinces.[22]

Before the arrival of European colonists into North America, the chimney swift nested in hollow trees; now, it uses human-built structures almost exclusively.[30] While the occasional nest is still built in a hollow tree (or, exceptionally, in an abandoned woodpecker nest),[54] most are now found in chimneys, with smaller numbers in airshafts, the dark corners of lightly used buildings, cisterns,[55] or wells.[56] The nest is a shallow bracket made of sticks, which the birds gather in flight, breaking them off trees. The sticks are glued together (and the nest to a vertical surface) with copious amounts of the bird's saliva.[57] During the breeding season, each adult's salivary glands more than double in size, from 7 mm × 2 mm (0.276 in × 0.079 in) in the non-breeding season to 14 mm × 5 mm (0.55 in × 0.20 in) during the breeding season.[18]

Unlike some swift species, which mate in flight, chimney swifts mate while clinging to a vertical surface near their nest.[58] They copulate daily, until the clutch is complete.[59] The female typically lays 4–5 eggs,[57] though clutch sizes range from 2 to 7.[59] The eggs, which are long and elliptical in shape, are moderately glossy, smooth and white, and measure 20 mm × 13 mm (0.79 in × 0.51 in).[57] Each weighs nearly 10 percent of the female's body weight.[59] Incubated by both parents, the eggs hatch after 19 days. Baby chimney swifts are altricial—naked, blind and helpless when they hatch. Fledglings leave the nest after a month.[57]

The average chimney swift's life span is 4.6 years,[60] but one is known to have lived more than 14 years. It was originally banded as an adult, and was recaptured in another banding operation some 12.5 years later.[61]

Predators and parasites[edit]

Mississippi Kites (Ictinia mississippiensis), peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus) and Merlins (Falco columbarius) are raptors that are known to take adult chimney swifts in flight, being among the select few avian hunters fast enough to overtake the appropriately named swift on the wing.[62] Eastern Screech-Owls (Megascops asio) have been observed to attack colonies as have non-avian predators including Black Rat Snakes (Pantherophis obsoletus), Raccoons (Procyon lotor) and tree squirrels (Sciurus ssp.). These are most likely to take nestlings but may take some nesting adults as well.[63][64] When disturbed by potential predators (including humans) at the colony, adult chimney swifts slap their wings together after arching back and taking flight, making a very loud noise known either as "booming" or "thunder noises". When disturbed, nestlings make a loud, raspy raah, raah, raah sound. Both sounds seem designed to startle potential predators.[65][66]

The chimney swift carries a number of internal and external parasites. It is the type host for the nematode species Aproctella nuda,[67] the feather mite species Euchineustathia tricapitosetosa,[68] and the biting lice species Dennyus dubius.[69] Its nest is known to host the Hemiptera species Cimexopsis nyctali, which is similar to the bedbug and can (on rare occasions) become a pest species in houses.[70][71]

Voice[edit]

Calls of multiple birds in Iowa

Problems playing this file? See media help.

The chimney swift has a twittering call, consisting of a rapid series of hard, high-pitched chirps. It sometimes gives single chirps.[36]

Conservation status[edit]

Purpose built towers can provide nesting and roosting locations.

In 2010, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature changed the chimney swift's status from "Least Concern" to "Near Threatened". Although the global population is estimated at 15 million, it has declined precipitously across the majority of its range.[1] The causes of population declines are largely unclear, but may be related to the alteration of the insect community due to pesticide use in the early half of the 20th Century.[72] In Canada, they were listed as Threatened by COSEWIC for several years with a likely future listing as a Schedule 1 species of the Species at Risk Act. In the U.S., the chimney swift is protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918. Neither birds nor nests can be removed from chimneys without a federally-issued permit.[73]

Populations may have increased historically with the introduction of chimneys to North America by European settlers, providing plentiful nesting opportunities.

After sudden temperature drops, the chimney swift sometimes hunts low over concrete roads (presumably following insect prey drawn to the warmer road), where collisions with vehicles become more likely.[74] Severe storms, such as hurricanes, encountered during migration can seriously impact the chimney's swift's survival rates. Swifts caught up in 2005's Hurricane Wilma were swept as far north as Atlantic Canada and Western Europe. More than 700 were found dead. The following year, roost counts in the province of Quebec, Canada showed a decrease of 62 percent, and the overall population in the province was halved.[75]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ By convention, length is measured from the tip of the bill to the tip of the tail on a dead bird (or skin) laid on its back.[16]
  2. ^ For more information, see Anatomy of the eye section in the Bird vision article

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c BirdLife International (2012). "Chaetura pelagica". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ a b c Cory, Charles B. (March 1918). Publication 197: Catalogue of Birds of the Americas. 13, part 2. Chicago, IL, USA: Field Museum of Natural History. p. 137. 
  3. ^ Stephens / Macquart; Dipt. exot., Suppl. 4, 271 (ex Mém. Soc. Sci. Lille, 1850 (1851), 244).
  4. ^ Feduccia, Alan, ed. (1999). Catesby's Birds of Colonial America. Chapel Hill, NC, USA: University of North Carolina Press. p. 78. ISBN 978-0-8078-4816-6. 
  5. ^ Audubon, John James (1840). The Birds of America, vol. 1. Philadelphia, PA, USA: J. B. Chevalier. p. 164. 
  6. ^ Ridgway, Robert; Friedmann, Herbert (1901). The birds of North and Middle America. Washington, D.C.: Government Publishing Office. pp. 714–719. 
  7. ^ Clements, James F.; Diamond, Jared; White, Anthony W.; Fitzpatrick, John W. (2007). The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World (6 ed.). Ithaca, NY, USA: Cornell University Press. p. 188. ISBN 978-0-8014-4501-9. 
  8. ^ Newton, Ian (2003). Speciation and Biogeography of Birds. London, UK: Academic Press. p. 296. ISBN 978-0-08-092499-1. 
  9. ^ Chantler (1999b), p. 443.
  10. ^ a b c Kyle & Kyle (2005), p. 15.
  11. ^ a b Jobling, James A. (2010). Helm Dictionary of Scientific Bird Names. London, UK: Christopher Helm. p. 295. ISBN 978-1-4081-2501-4. 
  12. ^ Dunne, Pete (2003). Pete Dunne on Bird Watching: The How-to, Where-to, and When-to of Birding. New York, NY, USA: Houghton Mifflin. p. 69. ISBN 978-0-395-90686-6. 
  13. ^ Fergus, Charles (2000). Wildlife of Pennsylvania and the Northeast. Mechanicsburg, PA, USA: Stackpole Books. p. 268. ISBN 978-0-8117-2899-7. 
  14. ^ Paul D. Kyle (2005). Chimney Swifts: America's Mysterious Birds Above The Fireplace. Texas A & M University Press. 
  15. ^ Althea Sherman (1952). Birds of an Iowa Dooryard. University of Iowa Press. 
  16. ^ Cramp, Stanley, ed. (1977). Handbook of the Birds of Europe, the Middle East and North Africa: Birds of the Western Palearctic, Volume 1, Ostrich to Ducks. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. p. 3. ISBN 978-0-19-857358-6. 
  17. ^ a b c "Chimney Swift". All about birds. Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology. Retrieved 29 November 2012. 
  18. ^ a b c Johnston, David W. (March–April 1958). "Sex and Age Characters and Salivary Glands of the Chimney Swift" (PDF). The Condor 60 (2): 73–84. doi:10.2307/1365265. 
  19. ^ a b Ridgely, Robert S.; Gwynne, John A. (1989). A Guide to the Birds of Panama: With Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Honduras. Princeton, NJ, USA: Princeton University Press. p. 201. ISBN 978-0-691-02512-4. 
  20. ^ Chantler (1999a), p. 185.
  21. ^ a b Barrows, Walter Bradford (1912). Michigan Bird Life. Lansing, MI, USA: MIchigan Agricultural College. p. 387. 
  22. ^ a b "Chimney Swift". National Geographic Society. Retrieved 19 December 2012. 
  23. ^ a b c d Dunne, Pete (2006). Pete Dunne's Essential Field Companion. New York, NY, USA: Houghton, Mifflin. p. 351. ISBN 978-0-618-23648-0. 
  24. ^ Blanchan, Neltje (1903). Bird Neighbors. New York, NY, USA: Doubleday and McClure. p. 67. LCCN 04010747. 
  25. ^ Henderson, Carrol L.; Adams, Steve (2008). Birds in Flight: The Art and Science of How Birds Fly. Minneapolis, MN, USA: Voyageur Press. p. 89. ISBN 978-0-7603-3392-1. 
  26. ^ a b Collins, Charles T. (2001). "Swifts". In Elphick, Chris; Dunning, Jr., John B.; Sibley, David. The Sibley Guide to Bird Life and Behaviour. London, UK: Christopher Helm. pp. 353–356. ISBN 978-0-7136-6250-4. 
  27. ^ Savile, D. B. O. (October 1950). "The Flight Mechanism of Swifts and Hummingbirds" (PDF). The Auk 67 (4): 499–504. doi:10.2307/4081091. 
  28. ^ Coues, Elliott (1872). Key to North American Birds. Salem, MA, USA: Naturalists' Agency. p. 45. LCCN 06017833. 
  29. ^ a b Dunn, Jon L.; Alderfer, Johnathon, eds. (2006). National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America (5 ed.). Washington, DC, USA: National Geographic. p. 270. ISBN 978-0-7922-5314-3. 
  30. ^ a b Burton, Maurice; Burton, Robert, eds. (2002). "Spinetail Swift". International Wildlife Encyclopedia (3 ed.). Tarrytown, NY, USA: Marshall Cavendish. p. 2484. ISBN 978-0-7614-7266-7. 
  31. ^ a b Chantler (1999b), p. 391.
  32. ^ Wood, Casey Albert (1917). The Fundus Oculi of Birds, Especially as Viewed by the Ophthalmoscope. Chicago, IL, USA: Lakeside Press. pp. 56–58. LCCN 17016887. 
  33. ^ a b Chantler (1999a), p. 187.
  34. ^ "Swifts". The Encyclopedia Americana, vol. 26. New York, NY, USA: Encyclopedia Americana Corporation. 1920. p. 133. 
  35. ^ Surface, H. A. (May 1905). "Family 21, Micropodidae: The Swifts". The Zoological Quarterly Bulletin 3 (1): 22. 
  36. ^ a b c d e Sibley, David Allen (2000). The Sibley Guide to Birds. New York, NY, USA: Alfred A. Knopf. p. 290. ISBN 978-0-679-45122-8. 
  37. ^ Sibley, David (11 October 2010). "Identifying Chimney and Vaux's Swifts by wing shape". Sibley Guides. Retrieved 2 December 2012. 
  38. ^ Kaufman, Kenn (2005). Kaufman Field Guide to Birds of North America. New York, NY, USA: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 228. ISBN 978-0-618-57423-0. 
  39. ^ Edwards, Ernest Preston (1998). A Field Guide to the Birds of Mexico and Adjacent Areas: Belize, Guatemala and El Salvador. Austin, TX, USA: University of Texas Press. p. 70. ISBN 978-0-292-72092-3. 
  40. ^ Lincoln, Frederick C. (October 1944). "Chimney Swift's Winter Home Discovered" (PDF) 61 (4). pp. 604–609. 
  41. ^ Wilson, James D. (2001). Common Birds of North America: An Expanded Guidebook. Minocqua, WI, USA: Willow Creek Press. p. 65. ISBN 978-1-57223-301-0. 
  42. ^ a b Wauer, Roland H. (1999). Heralds of Spring in Texas. College Station, TX, USA: Texas A & M University Press. p. 141. ISBN 978-0-89096-879-6. 
  43. ^ Dexter, Ralph W. "More concerning the thundering and clapping sounds of the Chimney Swift" (PDF). The Auk 63 (3): 439–440. doi:10.2307/4080136. 
  44. ^ Whitcomb, W. H.; Bhatkar, A.; Nickerson, J. C. (December 1973). "Predators of Solenopsis invicta Queens Prior to Successful Colony Establishment". Environmental Entomology 2 (6): 1101–1103. 
  45. ^ Webster, Francis Marion (27 February 1915). "Alfafa attacked by the clover root circulio". U. S. Department of Agriculture Farmers' Bulletin 649: 1–8. 
  46. ^ Woods, Gordon T. (October 1940). "Chimney Swifts Destroy Many Insects" (PDF). Bird Banding 11 (4): 173–174. 
  47. ^ Tiner, Tim. "Chimney Swift". Ontario Nature. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  48. ^ George, William G. (January 1971). "Foliage-gleaning by Chimney Swifts (Chaetura pelagica)" (PDF). The Auk 88 (1): 177. doi:10.2307/4083983. 
  49. ^ Crossley, Richard (2011). The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds. Princeton, NJ, USA: Princeton University Press. p. 322. ISBN 978-0-691-14778-9. 
  50. ^ Brown, Charles R. (Autumn 1980). "Chimney Swift Tries to Steal Prey from Purple Martin" (PDF). Journal of Field Ornithology 51 (4): 372–373. 
  51. ^ Cottam, Clarence (October 1932). "Nocturnal Habits of the Chimney Swift" (PDF). The Auk 49 (4): 479–481. doi:10.2307/4076440. 
  52. ^ Collins, Charles T.; Bull, Evelyn L. "Seasonal Variation in Body Mass of Chimney and Vaux's Swifts" (PDF). North American Bird Bander 21 (4): 143–152. 
  53. ^ Dexter, Ralph W. (April 1992). "Sociality of Chimney Swifts (Chaetura pelagica) Nesting in a Colony" (PDF). North American Bird Bander 17 (2): 61–64. 
  54. ^ Hofslund, P. B. (June 1958). "Chimney Swift nesting in an abandoned Pileated Woodpecker hole" (PDF). The Wilson Bulletin 70 (2): 192. 
  55. ^ Hyde, A. Sydney (January 1924). "Chimney Swift Nesting in a Cistern" (PDF). The Auk 41 (1): 157–158. doi:10.2307/4074113. 
  56. ^ Rogers, Charles H. (July 1917). "Chimney Swift Nesting in a Well" (PDF). The Auk 34 (3): 337. doi:10.2307/4072224. 
  57. ^ a b c d Baicich, Paul J.; Harrison, Colin J. O. (1977). Nests, Eggs, and Nestlings of North American Birds (2 ed.). Princeton, NJ, USA: Princeton University Press. p. 195. ISBN 978-0-691-12295-3. 
  58. ^ Kyle & Kyle (2005), p. 38
  59. ^ a b c Kyle & Kyle (2005), p. 39
  60. ^ Dexter, Ralph W. (July 1969). "Banding and Nesting Studies of the Chimney Swift, 1944–1968" (PDF). The Ohio Journal of Science 69 (4): 193–213. 
  61. ^ "Longevity Records of North American Birds". U.S. Geological Survey. Retrieved 5 December 2012. 
  62. ^ Steeves, Tanner K., Shannon B. Kearney-McGee, Margaret A. Rubega, Calvin L. Cink and Charles T. Collins. 2014. Chimney Swift (Chaetura pelagica), The Birds of North America Online (A. Poole, Ed.). Ithaca: Cornell Lab of Ornithology; Retrieved from the Birds of North America Online: http://bna.birds.cornell.edu/bna/species/646
  63. ^ Cink, Calvin L. (Summer 1990). "Snake Predation on Chimney Swift Nestlings" (PDF). Journal of Field Ornithology 61 (3): 288–289. 
  64. ^ Laskey, A. R. 1946. Snake depredation at birds' nests. Wilson Bull. 58:217-218.
  65. ^ Dexter, R. W. 1946. More concerning the thundering and clapping sounds of the Chimney Swift. Auk 63:439-440.
  66. ^ Fischer, R. B. 1958. The breeding biology of the Chimney Swift, Chaetura pelagica (Linnaeus). N.Y. State Mus. Sci. Serv. Bull. 368:1-139.
  67. ^ Hamann, C. B. (March 1940). "Notes on Aproctella nuda sp. nov. a Filarioid Nematode from the Chimney Swift Chaetura pelagica (Linn.)". American Midland Naturalist 23 (2): 390–392. doi:10.2307/2420671. 
  68. ^ Peterson, Paul; Atyeo, Warren T.; Moss, W. Vayne (1980). Feather Mite Family Eustathiidae (Aracina: Sarcoptiformes). Philadelphia, PA, USA: Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia. p. 32. ISSN 0096-7750. 
  69. ^ Ewing, H. E. (1930). "The taxonomy and host relationships of the biting lice of the genera Dennyus and Eureum, including the descriptions of a new genus, subgenus and four species". Proceedings of the United States National Museum 77 (2843): 1–16. doi:10.5479/si.00963801.77-2843.1. 
  70. ^ Boyd, Elizabeth M. (December 1951). "The External Parasites of Birds: A Review" (PDF). The Wilson Bulletin 63 (4): 363–369. 
  71. ^ Kell, Stephen A.; Hahn, Jeff. "Prevention and control of bed bugs in residences". University of Minnesota Extension. Retrieved 27 September 2012. 
  72. ^ Nocera, J et al. (2012). "Historical pesticide applications coincided with an altered diet of aerially foraging insectivorous chimney swifts". Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 279 (1740): 3114–3120. doi:10.1098/rspb.2012.0445. 
  73. ^ "Chimney Swifts: What's in my chimney". Maryland Department of Natural Resources. Retrieved 4 December 2012. 
  74. ^ Finnis, R. G. (January 1960). "Road Casualties Among Birds". Bird Study 7 (1): 21–32. doi:10.1080/00063656009475957. 
  75. ^ Dionne, Mark; Maurice, Cėline; Gauthier, Jean; Shaffer, François (December 2008). "Impact of Hurricane Wilma on migrating birds: the case of the Chimney Swift". The Wilson Journal of Ornithology 120 (4): 784–792. doi:10.1676/07-123.1. 

Cited texts[edit]

  • Chantler, Phil (1999a). Swifts: A Guide to the Swifts and Treeswifts of the World (2 ed.). London, UK: Pica Press. ISBN 978-1-8734-0383-9. 
  • Chantler, Phil (1999b). "Family Apodidae (Swifts)". In del Hoyo, Josep; Elliott, Andrew; Sargatal, Jordi. Handbook of Birds of the World, vol. 5: Barn-owls to Hummingbirds. Barcelona, Spain: Lynx Edicions. pp. 388–466. ISBN 978-84-87334-25-2. 
Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Source: Wikipedia

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Names and Taxonomy

Taxonomy

Comments: May constitute a superspecies with C. vauxi and C. chapmani (AOU 1998).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Default rating: 2.5 of 5

Disclaimer

EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!