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Seychelles Swiftlet - BirdForum Opus

Revision as of 12:02, 12 January 2009 by Wintibird (talk | contribs) (added picture)
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Photo by Jan Bisschop
Seychelles
Aerodramus elaphrus

Identification

10-12 cm. Dark grey-brown upperparts, slightly paler rump, pale grey-brown underparts, darkest on the undertail-coverts. Black bill and legs. The tail is dark and slightly forked.
Similar to Mascarene Swiftlet, but only Swiftlet on Seychelles and told apart by longer wings, longer bill and white rami of back feathers.
Believed to be capable of echolocation.

Distribution

Mahé, Praslin and La Digue in the Seychelles. Formerly also on Felicité.
This species is classified as Vulnerable due to its restricted range. Problems are disturbance of the colonies, vandalism and alien predators (cats and Common Barn Owl).

Taxonomy

Is sometimes considerd conspecific with Mascarene Swiftlet and forms a superspecies with it. Like other Aerodramus Swiftlets it's also sometimes placed into genus Collocalia.
Monotypic.

Habitat

Forest, wetlands, gardens, agricultural and urban areas, from the lowlands to the highlands.

Behaviour

The diet includes flying insects, particularly ants which are taken in flight. Like other Swiftlets gregarious and does often feed in groups over different habitats.
The nest is bracket-shaped and made of strands of lichen and casuarina needles held together by saliva and attached to the walls or ceilings of caves. 1 white egg is laid and is incubated for about 25 to 30 days. The young birds are fed by both parents and fledge after 42 days.
Seychelles Swiftlet is resident, but has been recorded on Aride.

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