Swifts

Apodidae

Taxonomy Version: IOC 10.1
family
Taxonomy Ranking
Level Rank Scientific Name

Swifts and swiftlets are among the most aerial of birds, feeding on flying insects and landing only to nest. Although superficially similar to swallows and martins (Hirundinidae) they are not closely related: swifts are not passerines (perching birds) and are more closely related to hummingbirds (Trochilidae). Swifts have long, curved wings and small weak legs and feet (the scientific name of the family is derived from the Greek meaning "footless"). They nest in elevated positions on cliffs and buildings; swiftlets build edible nests of saliva that are harvested in parts of Asia for "bird's nest soup". Representatives of the family are found throughout the world.

  • Common Swift - Lancashire © Simon St.Carter

  • Common Swift - Ceredigion © Brendan Sheils

  • Common Swift - Suffolk © Harry Read

  • Common Swift - Oxfordshire © Phil Gower

  • Common Swift - West Yorkshire © Richard Greenwood

  • Common Swift - Britain © Matthew Mellor

Select Genus
Scientific Name English Name Rank Rarity (UK) Image
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