5-6" (13-15 cm). Dark brown to black above with buff forehead, chestnut neck, and cinnamon rump; buff below. Tail slightly forked, but often appears square.
Similar Species- Cave Swallow, young Barn Swallows
Loud churr or chew notes.
Breeds from Alaska and portions of Canada, south to central Mexico, western Texas, Missouri, and portions of southeastern United Staes. Winters in South America.
Found in open to semi- wooded habitat (such as cliffs, canyons, and farms) near meadows, marshes, and water.
Primarily insectivorous; often feeds on small, swarming insects. Eats beetles, flying ants, wasps, grasshoppers, mosquitoes, and other insects.
gregarious at all seasons. Constructs nest on cliff, or under bridge, culvert, or eaves. Nests in colonies of up to 1000+ individuals (few hundred is average). Catches prey in air. Forages usually within 0.5 km of colony, but will sometimes travel several kilometers. Periodically, populations may decline drastically due to prolonged spring or summer rains and reduced food availability. Parasitic swallow bug is sometimes abundant enought to reduce reproductive success in large colonies.
Both parents incubate 2-6 eggs (usually 3-5), for about 12-14 days. Young are tended by both parents, and are able to fly at 23 days. Female usually produces 1 brood/year; a few have a second brood.
|Status:||Protected nongame species|
No references are available at this time.