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Related to Hirundinidae: Icteridae, Parulidae, Sittidae
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(swallows and martins), a family of birds of the order Passeriformes. The body length measures 10–23 cm. The bill is flattened, with a very wide gape. The wings are long and narrow. The legs are short, and the birds practically cannot walk; they perch on the ground only to gather material for nests. The upper parts are generally dark, often with a blue, green, or purple iridescence. The underparts are light.

The family comprises 79 species, which are distributed throughout the globe except for the arctic and antarctic. In the USSR, seven species nest: the house martin (Delichon urbica); the common, or barn, swallow (Hirundo rustica); the red-rumped swallow (Hirundo daurica); the wire-tailed swallow (Hirundo smithii); the crag martin (Riparia rupestris); the bank swallow, or sand martin (Riparia riparia); and the brown-throated sand martin, or Indian sand martin (Riparia paludicola). In addition, the tree swallow (Iridoprocne bicolor) and the cliff swallow (Petrochelidon albifrons) fly in from North America. The hirundines that nest in the USSR are migratory birds and winter in Africa and southern Asia.

The nests are hemispherical or shaped like a flat flask. They are made from muddy pellets mixed with saliva and are attached to the walls of buildings or to cliffs. Some species nest in burrows or tree hollows. The hirundines often settle in colonies. There are two to seven eggs per clutch and one or two clutches per year. Both the male and female incubate the eggs for 14 to 16 days. The hirundines feed almost exclusively on insects, which they catch in flight. Only one species feeds on juniper berries.


Ptitsy Sovetskogo Soiuza, vol. 6. Edited by G. P. Dement’ev and N. A. Gladkov. Moscow, 1954.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Prey were categorized into 11 relatively discrete groups (guilds) on the basis of body size and our observations of their behavior (Tables 1 and 2): 1) large wasps; 2) waterfowl (Anseriformes, Podicipediformes, and similar birds); 3) small raptors and scavengers (e.g., American kestrels Falco sparoarius and common ravens Cocoas corax); 4) shorebirds (Charadriiformes, except large Laridae); 5) waders and other large, non-anseriform waterbirds (e.g., Ciconiiformes and large Laridae); 6) belted kingfishers (Ceryle alcyon); 7) aerially feeding white-throated swifts and Hirundinidae, especially violet-green swallows; 8) non-riverine terrestrial birds (e.g., Columbiformes and terrestrial Passeriformes); 9) unidentified birds; 10) bats; and 11) other terrestrial taxa (mammals and reptiles).
Mean area-adjusted rate of encounter of swifts (Apodidae), Sayornis flycatchers (Tyrannidae), and swallows (Hirundinidae) were calculated from observations of those taxa by the lead author.
La especie ha sido citada en Sudamerica para Argentina, Brasil, Chile y Peru (Johnson 1957) principalmente en aves de las familias Psittacidae, Hirundinidae, Muscicapidae, Strigidae y Columbidae y, ocasionalmente, en marsupiales Didelphidae y roedores Caviidae y Muridae (Autino y Lareschi 1998).
If more than two species were found in a clade, the two species at the tip of the branch were compared, and if four species were present, as in the Hirundinidae, the two species following those at the tip were compared.
His first two revisions of avian families, the swallows (Hirundinidae) (Mayr and Bond 1943) and the waterfowl (Anatidae) (Delacour and Mayr 1945), for example, used nesting habits and courtship behavior, respectively.
STIRLING (1969), describe a las familias Turdidae, Corvidae, Hirundinidae, Passeridae, Sturnidae y Fringilidae como las mas predispuestas a tener albinismo y, ademas, relaciona la mayor frecuencia de presentacion en aves con mayor contacto social y mayor sedentarismo.
Central place foraging by swallows (Hirundinidae): the question of load size.