2007 Schools Wikipedia Selection. Related subjects: Birds

iSwallows and Martins
Welcome Swallow
Welcome Swallow
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Passeriformes
Family: Hirundinidae
Vigors, 1825

Many, see text.

The swallows and martins are a group of passerine birds in the family Hirundinidae which are characterised by their adaptation to aerial feeding. Swallow is also used in Europe as a synonym for the Barn Swallow.

This family comprises two subfamilies: Pseudochelidoninae (the river martins of the genus Pseudochelidon) and Hirundininae (all other swallows and martins). Within the Hirundiniae, the name martin tends to be used for the squarer-tailed species, and the name swallow for the more fork-tailed species; however, there is no scientific distinction between these two groups.

They have adapted to hunting insects on the wing by developing a slender streamlined body, and long pointed wings. Like the unrelated swifts and nightjars, which hunt in a similar way, they have short bills, but a wide gape.

Mud nests made by swallows.
Mud nests made by swallows.

Their feet are designed for perching rather than walking, and the front toes are partially joined at the base. Many species have long tails.

Swallows typically build mud nests close to overhead shelter in locations that are protected from both the weather and predators.

Many cave and cliff dwelling species of swallow nest in large colonies. In historical times, the introduction of man-made stone structures such as barns and bridges, together with forest clearance, has led to an abundance of colony sites around the globe, significantly increasing the breeding ranges of some species. Birds living in large colonies typically have to contend with both ectoparasites and conspecific nest parasitism. Old males benefit most from coloniality, since they are able to maintain their own nests and benefit from frequent extra-pair copulations.

Subfamily Pseudochelidoninae (river martins)
  • Pseudochelidon
    • African River Martin Pseudochelidon eurystomina
    • White-eyed River Martin Pseudochelidon sirintarae
Subfamily Hirundininae (all other swallows & martins)
  • Psalidoprocne
    • Square-tailed Rough-winged Swallow Psalidoprocne nitens
    • Cameroon Mountain Rough-winged Swallow Psalidoprocne fuliginosa
    • White-headed Rough-winged Swallow Psalidoprocne albiceps
    • Black Rough-winged Swallow Psalidoprocne pristoptera
    • Fanti Rough-winged Swallow Psalidoprocne obscura
    • Eastern Saw-Wing (Swallow) Psalidoprocne orientalis
    • Black Saw-Wing (Swallow) Psalidoprocne holomelaena
  • Pseudhirundo
    • Grey-rumped Swallow Pseudhirundo griseopyga
  • Cheramoeca
    • White-backed Swallow Cheramoeca leucosternus
  • Phedina
    • Mascarene Martin Phedina borbonica
    • Congo Martin Phedina brazzae
  • Riparia
    • Brown-throated Sand Martin Riparia paludicola
    • Congo Sand Martin Riparia congica
    • Sand Martin Riparia riparia
    • Pale Martin Riparia diluta
    • Banded Martin Riparia cincta
  • Tachycineta
    • Tree Swallow Tachycineta bicolor
    • Violet-green Swallow Tachycineta thalassina
    • Golden Swallow Tachycineta euchrysea
    • Bahama Swallow Tachycineta cyaneoviridis
    • Tumbes Swallow Tachycineta stolzmanni
    • Mangrove Swallow Tachycineta albilinea
    • White-winged Swallow Tachycineta albiventer
    • White-rumped Swallow Tachycineta leucorrhoa
    • Chilean Swallow Tachycineta meyeni
  • Progne
    • Purple Martin Progne subis
    • Cuban Martin Progne cryptoleuca
    • Caribbean Martin Progne dominicensis
    • Sinaloa Martin Progne sinaloae
    • Grey-breasted Martin Progne chalybea
    • Galapagos Martin Progne modesta
    • Peruvian Martin Progne murphyi
    • Southern Martin Progne elegans
    • Brown-chested Martin Progne tapera
  • Notiochelidon
    • Brown-bellied Swallow Notiochelidon murina
    • Blue-and-white Swallow Notiochelidon cyanoleuca
    • Pale-footed Swallow Notiochelidon flavipes
    • Black-capped Swallow Notiochelidon pileata
  • Haplochelidon
    • Andean Swallow Neochelidon andecola
  • Atticora
    • White-banded Swallow Atticora fasciata
    • Black-collared Swallow Atticora melanoleuca
  • Neochelidon
    • White-thighed Swallow Neochelidon tibialis
  • Stelgidopteryx
    • Northern Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx serripennis
    • Southern Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx ruficollis
  • Alopochelidon
    • Tawny-headed Swallow Alopochelidon fucata
  • Hirundo
    • Barn Swallow Hirundo rustica
    • Red-chested Swallow Hirundo lucida
    • Angolan Swallow Hirundo angolensis
    • Pacific Swallow Hirundo tahitica
    • Welcome Swallow Hirundo neoxena
    • White-throated Swallow Hirundo albigularis
    • Ethiopian Swallow Hirundo aethiopica
    • Wire-tailed Swallow Hirundo smithii
    • White-throated Blue Swallow Hirundo nigrita
    • Pied-winged Swallow Hirundo leucosoma
    • White-tailed Swallow Hirundo megaensis
    • Pearl-breasted Swallow Hirundo dimidiata
    • Montane Blue Swallow Hirundo atrocaerulea
    • Black-and-rufous Swallow Hirundo nigrorufa
  • Ptyonoprogne
    • Crag Martin Ptyonoprogne rupestris
    • Rock Martin Ptyonoprogne fuligula
    • Dusky Crag Martin Ptyonoprogne concolor
  • Delichon
    • House Martin Delichon urbicum
    • Asian House Martin Delichon dasypus
    • Nepal House Martin Delichon nipalense
  • Cecropis
    • Greater Striped Swallow Cecropis cucullata
    • Lesser Striped Swallow Cecropis abyssinica
    • Rufous-chested Swallow Cecropis semirufa
    • Mosque Swallow Cecropis senegalensis
    • Red-rumped Swallow Cecropis daurica
    • Striated Swallow Cecropis striolata
    • Rufous-bellied Swallow Cecropis badia
  • Petrochelidon
    • Red-throated Swallow Petrochelidon rufigula
    • Preuss's Swallow Petrochelidon preussi
    • Red Sea Swallow Petrochelidon perdita
    • South African Swallow Petrochelidon spilodera
    • Forest Swallow Petrochelidon fuliginosa
    • Streak-throated Swallow Petrochelidon fluvicola
    • Fairy Martin Petrochelidon ariel
    • Tree Martin Petrochelidon nigricans
    • Cliff Swallow Petrochelidon pyrrhonota
    • Cave Swallow Petrochelidon fulva
    • Chestnut-collared Swallow Petrochelidon rufocollaris

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