One of our most familiar swallows, often found in close association with human habitation, is the Greater Striped Swallow. They prefer open, undulating and mountainous habitats, often near open water, where they hawk the flying insects that form their staple diet.
Greater Striped Swallows breed from early spring to deep in autumn and build mud-nests beneath overhanging rocks and toppled trees, but they have adapted well to using the underside of roofs and bridges for the purpose (see photos). Usually clutches consist of 3 eggs, incubated by the female alone for 3 weeks though both parents feed the chicks once hatched. The chicks start flying when they’re a month old but will return to the safety of the nest for a few days afterwards still. Adults measure about 18cm long and weigh around 25g.
Greater Striped Swallows are to be seen seasonally in most of Africa south of the equator, “wintering” in the DRC, Angola and Tanzania and moving southwards to breed in southern Africa from August to March – during summer they occur in virtually every corner of South Africa. The IUCN considers it to be of least concern.
It is time for the annual SA Blog Awards again! In 2017 we won in both the “Best Travel Blog” and “Best Environmental Blog” categories and we need your help to defend our titles!
If you enjoy de Wets Wild as much as we enjoy sharing our love for South Africa’s wild places and the wildlife that thrives there with you, please support us again in the 2018 South African Blog Awards? We’ve again entered the categories for “Best Travel Blog” and “Best Environmental Blog“, and you are allowed to vote for us in both. Clicking on the badge below will bring you to the voting site. After voting, you’ll receive an e-mail requiring you to click on a link to confirm your votes.
Thank you very much for your support – we really do appreciate it!