Common Nesting Birds

meet your neighbors

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Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)


Photo © Richard Richtmyer

Barn Swallow nest

Photo © René Corado

Barn Swallow eggs

Photo © René Corado

Barn Swallow

Photo © Sharon Beals, from the collection of the California Academy of Sciences

Barn Swallow nest

Photo © 2004 Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Adult (American)

Photo © Mason Maron | Macaulay Library

Adult (American)

Photo © Ryan Sanderson | Macaulay Library

Adult (White-bellied)

Photo © Erkki Lehtovirta | Macaulay Library

Adult (White-bellied)

Photo © Pavel Štěpánek | Macaulay Library

Adult (Buff-bellied)

Photo © Itamar Donitza | Macaulay Library

Adult (Tytler's)

Photo © Andrew Spencer | Macaulay Library

Adult (Levant)

Photo © Eric francois Roualet | Macaulay Library

Adult (American)

Photo © Ad Konings | Macaulay Library

Adult (American)

Photo © Ryan Sanderson | Macaulay Library

Adult (White-bellied)

Photo © Huw Roberts | Macaulay Library

Juvenile (American)

Photo © Farshad Pourmalek | Macaulay Library

Immature (Egyptian)

Photo © Ray Scally | Macaulay Library

Immature (Levant)

Photo © yuda siliki | Macaulay Library

Juvenile (White-bellied)

Photo © Teresa Cohen | Macaulay Library

Juvenile (American)

Photo © Laure Wilson Neish | Macaulay Library

Adult (American)

Photo © Ryan Sanderson | Macaulay Library

Adult (American)

Photo © Jay McGowan | Macaulay Library

Flock (American)

Photo © George Gerdts | Macaulay Library

Song (American)

© Dave Herr | Macaulay Library

Song (American)

© Lang Elliott | Macaulay Library

Calls (American)

© Jay McGowan | Macaulay Library

Calls (American)

© Ed Pandolfino | Macaulay Library

Calls (American)

© Michael Andersen | Macaulay Library

Calls (American)

© Glen Chapman | Macaulay Library

Calls (American)

© Nathan Pieplow

Song (White-bellied)

© Gregory Budney | Macaulay Library

Calls (White-bellied)

© Gregory Budney | Macaulay Library

Calls (White-bellied)

© Gregory Budney | Macaulay Library

Song (Tytler's)

© Bob McGuire | Macaulay Library

Calls (Tytler's)

© Bob McGuire | Macaulay Library

Song (Buff-bellied)

© Boris N. Veprintsev

Calls (Buff-bellied)

© Boris N. Veprintsev

When To Look

Source: Birds of the World

Where To Find It

Habitats

grassland

lake

shore

town

Substrates

Cliff or Rock

In/On Building

What You'll Find

Nest Type

cup

Chick

Altricial

Clutch Size

3
7

Nest Height

40 ft
6 ft

Nesting Statistics

Incubation Period

12-17
days

Brooding Period

15-27
days

Useful Hints

  • Breeding areas must contain a source of mud (such as a river bank) for incorporation into the nest structure. In drought-prone areas, you can make a Barn Swallow nest cup.
  • Barn Swallows will sometimes reuse old nests, but they avoid ones heavily infested with mites or parasites. They will clean out the old feathers and add new mud to the rim.
  • Barn Swallows once nested in caves throughout North America, but now build their nests almost exclusively on human-made structures.

Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Cornell Lab of Ornithology