Debelo P.V., Shevchenko V.L. & Dzhubanov A.A. (1987): Some features of distribution and biology of Common Swift in the northern Caspian area (Russian). Ornithologia 22, p. 205-206
[Дебело П.В. & Шевченко В.Л.: Некоторые особенности распространения и биологии черного стрижа в северном Прикаспии]
by IGOR FEFELOV
Data about phenology and breeding distribution of Common Swift in 1960-1980s, and habitats and nest placements in some colonies in 1984-1985 in the north of Caspian area in western Kazakhstan (lower Ural River and around) are described. Nine Swift colonies from 10 to at least 38 nests, probably containing one breeding population, were found in the Utva-Ilek watershed in natural cliffs in 1984-1985. Further south, in the Caspian lowlands, Swifts were observed near Chelkar Lake and Uyil River. Several birds attempted to breed on a building in Ural'sk in 1978. In the Ural River valley, in June-July single birds and small flocks were seen near Budarino, Bogatsk, and Krugloozernoye. In the upper stream of the Kushun River, single birds and flocks of up to 40 individuals were recorded in midsummer as well. In spring, Swifts appear relatively late. In the center of Volga-Ural Sands (Aybas, Novy Ushtangan, Sasyktau), arrival was recorded between 14 May (1958) and 30 May (1984), on average on 24 May (n=7). Migration occurs during the first two weeks of June. At the northern margin of the sands, near Novaya Kazanka, arrival was between 20 May (1974) and 27 May (1959), on average on 24 May (n=4), and the last birds were recorded in the first five days of June. At the eastern margin of the sands (Tuma, Kambakty), the arrival fell between 18 May (1962) and 27 May (1959), on average on 19 May (n=4), and the migration was over by 11 Jun (1963). In more northerly areas (Kalmykovo), a visible migration continued until 21 Jun. Near tributaries of the Kushum River, the first Swifts were observed on 14 May 1958, 17 May 1971, and 18 May 1969. In Transuralia, on the Uyil River near Raygorodok, the first Swifts were seen to arrive on 22 May 1979; in the upper stream of Kaldygayty River on 10 May 1970 and 15 May 1968. In the postbreeding time, in the upper stream of the Kaldygayty River the first flocks of Swifts were observed moving southward (from 8 to 40 individuals) from 20 Jul 1984. Up to 4 August of the same year, they were recorded also within 20-50 km of Koskol' Lake and the Zhaksybay River. Thus, in general, Swifts are present in this region for a period of up to 100 days.
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