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from September 1998


Pictures of the Common Swift

The adult Common Swift. This individual is 21 years old.

This bird is about 35 days old. In their first year, the feathers of the forehead 
of the Common Swift have white fringes. On the neck one can still see down.

The Common Swift in a somewhat unusual position. In central Europe Common
Swifts only land to discover nesting sites. - The flying bird with the white belly is 
an Alpine Swift.

Common Swift stuffed

I found this stuffed Swift in a diorama at the Museum of Gorodok, in Belarus. Common Swifts are unable to sit on branches, but occasionally they hang from them, a practice sometimes seen amongst young Swifts in Northern Europe.

A nestling leaves the nest. It will never return to it and the next time it will touch 
the ground again will be in the next year or even the year after.

(Picture from APUSlist No. 0129)

As you can see from this picture, nesting Swifts leave the nest simply by 
jumping out and falling a short distance to pick up speed for flight. You can 
see also that the largest primary is next-to-last in the outermost feathers of 
the wing.







An adult Common Swift relaxed on its nest.


A young one on the nest, it is 38 days old. 
(Picture from APUSlist No. 1131, Photo E. Bersot)








An adult CS caught in a mistnet at the Muckamore colony in Antrim (Northern Ireland) in July 2001
(Photographer Kenneth Perry)

Published with kind permission of (C) Tom Lindroos



Published with kind permission of (C) Emmanuel Cazier.












Published with kind permission of Jean-François Cornuet


The following photos show a Common Swift hunting insects, and another with a full pouch, carrying insects to the young in the nest. A pair of Swifts will feed about 1,7 million insects to three chicks in one breeding season.

Published with kind permission of (c) Raymond De Smet


To see a parent birds feeding a chick click here

To see more pictures click on (in flight) (nestlings from 3 - 42 days old)




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