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Birding Colorado Springs: Swifts, Swallows & etc.

Birds commonly seen in Colorado Springs and surrounding areas.

Swifts, Swallows & Etc.

Birds that constantly catch insects on the fly. Their legs tend to be short and their feet not adapted for walking or hopping on the ground without the aid of their wings. Because of their diet, these birds are not present in our area in winter. The birds shown on this page are not closely related, merely grouped here for identification purposes.

White-throated Swift
Author: Michael Woodruff. Creative Commons Attribution Generic 2.0

Info (All About Birds) Song/Call (Macaulay library) Video (YouTube)
  • Swifts in flight tend to resemble flying cigars with stiff, narrow wings
  • White-throated Swifts live in large colonies where they build their nests in the cracks of cliff faces
  • Can be seen at Garden of the Gods in the summer

Barn Swallow
Author: JJ Cadiz, Cajay .Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 unported

Info (All About Birds) Call/Song (Macaulay library) Video (YouTube)
  • Widespread and common bird of summer
  • Blue back, orange(ish) front
  • Often seen catching insects over water or at street intersections
  • Readily nests on human structures, including bridges and front door underhangs of supermarkets

Common Nighthawk
Author: Kenneth Cole Schnelder. Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic

Info (All About Birds) Call (Macaulay library) Video (YouTube)
  • Common Nighthawks tend to fly high in the sky; listen for their distinctive buzzy call and look for a white stripe on each wing
  • Can be visually spotted in the evening, or at night if bright lights are available outdoors (such as amusement parks or sports fields)
  • Male breeding flight display involves a divebomb maneuver which makes a peculiar noise (At about :08 here)
  • Will nest on rooftops