White-throated Needletail

Hirundapus caudacutus

Order

APODIFORMES

Family

Swifts (Apodidae)

Code 4

WTNE

Code 6

HIRCAU

ITIS

Egg Color:

White



Number of Eggs:

3 - 6



Incubation Days:

17 - 23



Egg Incubator:

Both sexes



Nest Location:

In a hollow or similar crevice high in a tall conifer.



Nest Material:

Various materials glued with sticky saliva.



Migration:

Migratory



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General

White-throated Needletail: Large swift, gray-brown overall with white throat and undertail. Wings are glossed with green. Tail is short and square, with protruding feather shafts giving a spiked appearance. Sexes are similar.

Range and Habitat

White-throated Needletail: Native of Eurasia from Eastern Europe to China and south Malaysia and Australia. Breeds in the northern parts of its range and migrates south. Occurs as a visitor to North America only in the outer Aleutians in the springtime. Preferred habitats include timbered ridges, rocky hilltops, and rock crevices.

Breeding and Nesting

White-throated Needletail: Three to six white eggs are laid in a nest made of various materials, glued together with saliva, and built in a hollow or similar crevice high in a tall conifer. Incubation ranges from 17 to 23 days and is carried out by both parents.

Foraging and Feeding

White-throated Needletail: Feeds on flying insects, such as termites, beetles, and flies; forages in flight.

Vocalization

White-throated Needletail: Emits insect-like chatters “trp-trp-trp-trp-trp-trp...” which vary in speed.

Similar Species

White-throated Needletail: None in range.

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Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X