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Basic knowledge about swallow birds

Swallow birds on a wire

A short article with basic knowledge about swallows! Learn useful information about these nice birds that visit Mediterranean areas every spring and build their nests near us.

How long does a swallow live?

The maximum recorded time is 8 years and 1 month. The lifespan of a swallow depends on factors such as the quality and quantity of food it receives, its ability to make migration trips.

How long does it take the swallow to build its nest?

The swallow builds its new nest in about 3 weeks. The process is laborious. That is why it is very important to maintain the nests they have built. The swallows return to their nests.

What do swallows eat?

Swallows eat insects. Mostly flying insects which make up 99% of their diet. They catch their prey as they fly.

Where do swallows go in winter?

They migrate to parts of central and southern Africa. In spring they return to Greece and Mediterranean areas.

How many species of swallows are there?

84 species of swallows have been recorded.

The most common in urban Greece is the Barn swallow (Hirundo rustica).

  1. African river martin, Pseudochelidon eurystomina
  2. White-eyed river martin, Pseudochelidon sirintarae
  3. Square-tailed saw-wing, Psalidoprocne nitens
  4. Mountain saw-wing, Psalidoprocne fuliginosa
  5. White-headed saw-wing, Psalidoprocne albiceps
  6. Black-headed saw-wing, Psalidoprocne pristoptera
  7. Fanti saw-wing, Psalidoprocne obscura
  8. Grey-rumped swallow, Pseudhirundo griseopyga
  9. White-backed swallow, Cheramoeca leucosternus
  10. Mascarene martin, Phedina borbonica
  11. Brazza’s martin, Phedina brazzae
  12. Brown-throated martin, Riparia paludicola
  13. Grey-throated martin, Riparia chinensis
  14. Congo martin, Riparia congica
  15. Sand martin, Riparia riparia
  16. Banded martin, Riparia cincta
  17. Tree swallow, Tachycineta bicolor
  18. Violet-green swallow, Tachycineta thalassina
  19. Golden swallow, Tachycineta euchrysea
  20. Bahama swallow, Tachycineta cyaneoviridis
  21. Tumbes swallow, Tachycineta stolzmanni
  22. Mangrove swallow, Tachycineta albilinea
  23. White-winged swallow, Tachycineta albiventer
  24. White-rumped swallow, Tachycineta leucorrhoa
  25. Chilean swallow, Tachycineta meyeni
  26. Purple martin, Progne subis
  27. Cuban martin, Progne cryptoleuca
  28. Caribbean martin, Progne dominicensis
  29. Sinaloa martin, Progne sinaloae
  30. Grey-breasted martin, Progne chalybea
  31. Galapagos martin, Progne modesta
  32. Peruvian martin, Progne murphyi
  33. Southern martin, Progne elegans
  34. Brown-chested martin, Progne tapera
  35. Brown-bellied swallow, Notiochelidon murina
  36. Blue-and-white swallow, Notiochelidon cyanoleuca
  37. Pale-footed swallow, Notiochelidon flavipes
  38. Black-capped swallow, Notiochelidon pileata
  39. Andean swallow, Haplochelidon andecola
  40. White-banded swallow, Atticora fasciata
  41. Black-collared swallow, Atticora melanoleuca
  42. White-thighed swallow, Neochelidon tibialis
  43. Northern rough-winged swallow, Stelgidopteryx serripennis
  44. Southern rough-winged swallow, Stelgidopteryx ruficollis
  45. Tawny-headed swallow, Alopochelidon fucata
  46. Barn swallow, Hirundo rustica
  47. Red-chested swallow, Hirundo lucida
  48. Angola swallow, Hirundo angolensis
  49. Pacific swallow, Hirundo tahitica
  50. Welcome swallow, Hirundo neoxena
  51. White-throated swallow, Hirundo albigularis
  52. Ethiopian swallow, Hirundo aethiopica
  53. Wire-tailed swallow, Hirundo smithii
  54. White-bibbed swallow, Hirundo nigrita
  55. Pied-winged swallow, Hirundo leucosoma
  56. White-tailed swallow, Hirundo megaensis
  57. Pearl-breasted swallow, Hirundo dimidiata
  58. Blue swallow, Hirundo atrocaerulea
  59. Black-and-rufous swallow, Hirundo nigrorufa
  60. Eurasian crag martin, Ptyonoprogne rupestris
  61. Pale crag martin, Ptyonoprogne obsoleta
  62. Rock martin, Ptyonoprogne fuligula
  63. Dusky crag martin, Ptyonoprogne concolor
  64. Common house martin, Delichon urbicum
  65. Asian house martin, Delichon dasypus
  66. Nepal house martin, Delichon nipalense
  67. Greater striped swallow, Cecropis cucullata
  68. Lesser striped swallow, Cecropis abyssinica
  69. Red-breasted swallow, Cecropis semirufa
  70. Mosque swallow, Cecropis senegalensis
  71. Red-rumped swallow, Cecropis daurica
  72. Striated swallow, Cecropis striolata
  73. Rufous-bellied swallow, Cecropis badia
  74. Red-throated cliff swallow, Petrochelidon rufigula
  75. Preuss’s cliff swallow, Petrochelidon preussi
  76. Red Sea cliff swallow, Petrochelidon perdita
  77. South African cliff swallow, Petrochelidon spilodera
  78. Forest swallow, Petrochelidon fuliginosa
  79. Streak-throated swallow, Petrochelidon fluvicola
  80. Fairy martin, Petrochelidon ariel
  81. Tree martin, Petrochelidon nigricans
  82. American cliff swallow, Petrochelidon pyrrhonota
  83. Cave swallow, Petrochelidon fulva
  84. Chestnut-collared swallow, Petrochelidon rufocollaris


Barn swallow


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