Barn swallow chick on branch begging food from a adult

Swallows and martins

Swallows and martins have evolved to be specialists at catching insects on the wing. Their streamlined shape and long, thin, tapering wing shape makes them fast and highly manoeuvrable.

How to identify swifts, swallows and martins.

Scientific name: Hirundinidae

Rank: Family

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Map showing the distribution of the Swallows and martins taxa

The shading illustrates the diversity of this group - the darker the colour the greater the number of species. Data provided by WWF's Wildfinder.

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