Scientific title: Apus apus 
Scientific classification:
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Apodiformes
Family: Apodidae


What does it appear like?
This small, brown chook is often round 16 to 17 cm lengthy with a forked tail and a big pair of wings that type a crescent formed span of round 40 cm when the animal is in flight. They can weigh up to 56 g. On the chin there's a small patch of white feathers. The beak is brief, however broad. The ft are small and placed far again on the physique.

Where does it dwell?
The frequent swift is an animal of the air. It is a migratory species, so it spends the temperate winter in Sub Saharan Africa and flies north within the spring, ranging as far north as Scandinavia and as far east because the Himalayas and Pacific coast of Russia.

Characteristics

No different birds can compete with the swifts for sheer mastery of the air. In some ways they're an aerial reflection of sure fish and sharks that ceaselessly cruise the world’s oceans. These aquatic animals have a hydrodynamic type that may minimize by means of the water with utmost ease. Although the frequent swift glides by means of the air, it too has sure variations that enable it to minimize by means of the air with an incredible class. The physique is compact and streamlined and the feathers pad out and easy all of the angles of the physique. The wings are lengthy and taper to a positive tip. This form is right for decreasing drag because the chook flies by means of the air. The bones within the wing of the swift close to the physique are quick and stocky and enable the floor of the wing to be moved with appreciable drive by the flight muscle mass, enabling excessive speeds to be reached. During shows and disputes after they go into steep dives, frequent swifts can attain speeds of 60 m per second, which may solely be matched by sure falcons and different, bigger swifts. The bones within the wing that reach from the elbow in the direction of the tip are lengthy and mobile giving the swift superb agility within the air. Typically, the frequent swift flies at round 5 to 14 m per second for looking functions. Like a filter-feeding fish, with its mouth broad open, the frequent swift flies by means of the air amassing tiny bugs because it goes. If it's amassing these bugs for nestlings it'll maintain them in a saliva sure ball in its throat. Nestlings are very hungry and every chook in a breeding pair could have to ship 40 helpings of bugs to the younger day by day. Building the nest, brooding the eggs and feeding the younger are the one occasions {that a} frequent swift stops flying. It is phenomenal as a result of it does all the things else on the wing. It feeds by catching aerial bugs, it drinks by skimming water from the floor of a lake or puddle and it sleeps within the air and even mates within the air. More superb nonetheless is the truth that a fledgling frequent swift doesn't breed till its third or fourth 12 months, which implies that when it does come to arrange a nest it is going to be the primary time it has folded its wings for 2 or three years. The distances these birds cowl in a single 12 months are astonishing and are in all probability 200,000 km on the very least. Most complicated among the many swift’s aerial skills is its sleep flying. How does it fl y and sleep on the identical time? Again, it's troublesome to know for positive as it's troublesome to document a swift when it's sleeping. Sleep, in most animals, is a pure relaxed state after they have lowered consciousness of their environment. Sleeping and fl ying don’t combine—simply ask a pilot. Somehow the swift has discovered an answer to this Challenge and it's thought that it could relaxation one half of its mind at a time. While one half of the mind rests, the opposite half takes over all of the capabilities and vice versa. During these bouts of sleep the chook could solely be able to easy flying and could also be compelled to ascend the place it could fl y in regular circles for some time. The frequent swift in all probability divides its sleeping into small naps as a substitute of 1 lengthy, steady slumber.

Key Facts

  • There are round 96 species of swifts, swiflets, and needletails, all of which have the identical basic physique plan. They are all knowledgeable flyers.
  • Swifts resemble these different masters of the air, the swallows and the martins, however in precise reality they aren't carefully associated, they simply occur to look the identical as a result of they do the identical factor. This is one other instance of convergent evolution.
  • The nest of the frequent swift consists of fabric that it finds on the wing, corresponding to feathers, dry grass, straw, lifeless leaves, winged seeds, flower petals, and paper scraps. Nest constructing can take someday particularly if circumstances are calm and there was inadequate wind to carry appropriate materials into the air.
  • The look and the flying skills of the swifts are a consequence of looking aerial bugs. Many kinds of insect and spider spend a minimum of a few of their life within the air along with micro organism, viruses, fungi, and protists. This so-known as soup of small creatures and microorganisms is called aeroplankton and many various animals rely upon it.
  • Bad climate makes it very troublesome for frequent swifts to hunt, which might be disastrous for the ever-gluttonous nestlings. Fortunately, the chicks have an adaptation that permits them to drop their physique temperature and to enter a type of torpor. In this state of slowed metabolism the chicks lose their wild starvation, for some time, a minimum of.
  • Naturally, the swift is an animal of rock faces and cliff s, however human habitations have given them an entire new vary of nesting websites to exploit.
  • Certain species of cave swiftlet from Southeast Asia construct their nest solely from saliva. These nests are the important thing ingredient of chook’s nest soup, which is a delicacy in oriental delicacies. Nests collected from caves utilizing towering bamboo scaffolds command the next value than these obtained from goal-constructed nest homes. The nest within the soup has a gelatinous texture and is it stated to be good for basic health, nonetheless, in some people the soup could cause the extreme secretion of abdomen acid.
  • Swifts are totally reliant on bugs for food and are subsequently in danger from the indiscriminate use of pesticides in fashionable, intensive agriculture.