Friday, 28 November 2008

Special birds: Red-rumped Swallow

This elegant and very long-tailed swallow, Hirundo daurica, is rather common locally in the Balkans, from central Serbia, Croatia, Romania and Bulgaria southwards. It typically nests on cliffs, buildings, ruins and under bridges. Though called "red-rumped" the rump often seems to be cream or white as it dashes by. In fact, it is often the nape that first appears "red" or rusty. Males and females are very similar in appearance: males have longer and finer tail streamers. This fine photo of a male collecting mud at a puddle was taken in Serbia this summer by Maciej Szymanski.

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