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ADRIAN SKERRETT:

The Common Swift as a rare visitor to Seychelles


Seychelles is situated outside the normal distribution range of the Common Swift. The main islands lie approximately 1,500 km and the Aldabra Group about 650 kilometres east of the African continent, which is the wintering area of the species. Reports of vagrant species in Seychelles are assessed by Seychelles Records Committee (SBRC), which has accepted ten records for Apus apus. Six of these have been accepted with the caveat that other possible all-dark Apus species were not ruled out by the details known to SBRC. Two records involve specimens of two different races. In detail, accepted records are as follows: One race pekinensis shot on Picard, Aldabra 1 December 1892. One juvenile nominate race caught at Picard Aldabra 8 September 1967. One at Grand Terre, Aldabra 15 March 1968. Two on Bird Island 30 September and singles 30 October, 6 November, 7 November, 14 November 1972 (possibly the same individual), accepted with caveat. One on Assumption 29 October and 1 November 1978, accepted with caveat. One on Fregate 29 September 1991, accepted with caveat. One on Fregate 2 February 1994, accepted with caveat. One at St Francois, 8 May 1995. One at Assumption, 9 December 1998, accepted with caveat. One on Bird Island September 2000, which died and the skin preserved at Tring (though it has not yet been examined by SBRC to see if race is assignable).

 

APUSlife 2003, No. 2839
ISSN 1438-2261

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