Jump to content
Whatbird Community

These are Cliff Swallows, not Barn Swallows, aren't they?

Recommended Posts

Riverfront Park, downtown Columbia, SC.  July 5th.  Perched on power lines and flying around over fast Broad River and slow canal, adjacent to a highway overpass and a railroad trestle.

Square tails, white forehead, scruffy dark necklace?  I saw several flying that definitely had deeply notched tails like Barns, and I jumped to the conclusion all the swallows I saw were Barns.   Then I looked at these mediocre long-range photos and realized I probably made a mistake.  Still, my standard for photos has long been that they be good enough for ID purposes, and I think these overrule my assumption.

Thanks for any feedback.




Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, Kevin said:

Agreed. Note the white on there foreheads.

Though their foreheads are white, Cliff Swallow is not the only swallow to show white on the forehead. Many juvenile Barns do, though usually not so extensive nor so well defined.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd be better ID'ing swallows if I could make out the details when they're on the wing.  Most of my sightings wind up as 'Swallow sp.'.  Sometimes I can tell I have more than one type in sight but can't tell what they unless they land.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...