Arizona Naturalists >>> Sycamore Gallery Animals >>> Birds >>> Barn Swallow

Barn Swallow

Hirundo rustica erythrogaster

Hirundo rustica taking heat treatment photo © by Robert Shantz

Many Barn Swallows were observed sitting and pressing against hot, sunny pavement apparently for heat and possibly to soothe bites from bugs. Sta. Cruz Co., Arizona, USA. Aug. 2010.

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For beginning bird watchers swallows can be difficult birds to identify. They rarely perch - instead they seem to be in constant flight as they swoop and swerve taking small insects on the wing. It is typically necessary to follow a bird with binoculars for several minutes watching for it to bank and turn enough to get looks at both the top and underside, the head and the tail. The barn swallow is the easiest to figure with the pair of long forked tail feathers. This highly migratory bird is found through much of the Northern Hemisphere. Birds in Eurasia have almost no rust color on the chest. Ranch buildings are often located in or near sycamore woodlands where the barn swallows' nesting activity is concentrated.

Hirunidae -- Swallow Family

Spring/Summer Breeder/ Migrating to Neotropics for Winter

More Information:

Arizona Naturalist
Sycamore Canyons
The Fauna of Arizona's Sycamore Canyons


Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 20 Dec. 2010