Northern Rough-winged Swallow

(Stelgidopteryx serripennis)

Conservation Status
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Photo by Lynn Rubey
  IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

     
  NatureServe

N5B, N5N - Secure Breeding and Nonbreeding

SNRB - Unranked Breeding

     
  Minnesota

not listed

     
           
 
Description
 
 

Northern Rough-winged Swallow is a small bird but a medium-sized swallow. It occurs throughout the United States and southern Canada, and in Mexico and Central America. There are six currently recognized subspecies. Only the nominate subspecies Stelgidopteryx serripennis serripennis occurs in Minnesota. It is a common migrant in the state in the spring, an uncommon visitor in the summer, and an uncommon migrant in the fall. It winters from Mexico to Florida south to Panama. It is found in fields, open woodlands, and other open areas near water. It is usually seen singly or in pairs, but often feeds with groups of other swallow species. It eats almost exclusively flying insects, usually over water. It drinks on the wing by skimming the water surface.

Adults are 5 to 5 (13 to 15 cm) in length and have a 10 to 111316 (27 to 30 cm) wingspan. The body is long, the head and bill small. The upper parts are brown. The underparts are white with a grayish-brown wash on the chin, throat, upper breast and sides. It does not have a dark breast band. The rump is dark. The tail is square, not notched or forked. The wings are long and pointed. The outermost wing feathers have small serrations. The purpose of the serrations is unknown but may be to produce a sound during courtship displays.

 
     
 

Size

 
 

5 to 5 (13 to 15 cm) in length

10 to 111316 (27 to 30 cm) wingspan

 
     
 

Voice

 
   
     
 

Similar Species

 
     
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Fields, open woodlands, and other open areas near water

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Migration

 
 

Mid-April to early October

 
     
 

Nesting

 
 

It nests in dirt banks alone, not in colonies. It uses burrows excavated by other birds and mammals.

 
     
 

Food

 
 

Flying insects

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Occurrence

 
 

Common migrant, local breeder

 
         
 

Maps

 
 

The Minnesota Ornithologists’ Union All Seasons Species Occurrence Map

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
  Class Aves (birds)  
 

Order

Passeriformes (perching birds)  
 

Family

Hirundinidae (swallows and martins)  
 

Genus

Stelgidopteryx (rough-winged swallows)  
       
 

Subordinate Taxa

 
 

Northern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis burleighi)

Northern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis fulvipennis)

Northern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis serripennis)

Northern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis stuarti)

Ridgway’s Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis ridgwayi)

Sonora Northern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis psammochroa)

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

 

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

       
Visitor Photos
   

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Lynn Rubey
       

A Northern Rough-winged Swallow in The Big Stone National Wildlife Refuge in Lac qui Parle County on May 15, 2020.

  Northern Rough-winged Swallow   Northern Rough-winged Swallow
       

A Norther Rough-winged Swallow in flight as it would dip low over the stream before coming to its perch near the walking path in The Big Stone National Wildlife Refuge in Lac qui Parle County.

  Northern Rough-winged Swallow    
       
       
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
   
       
       

 

Camera

     
Slideshows
   
  Northern Rough-winged Swallow
JMC Nature Photos
 
  Northern Rough-winged Swallow  
     

 

slideshow

       
Visitor Videos
   

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Other Videos
 
  NORTHERN ROUGH-WINGED SWALLOW, Stelgidopteryx serripennis preening
Rob Curtis
 
   
 
About

Dec 23, 2019

NORTHERN ROUGH-WINGED SWALLOW, Stelgidopteryx serripennis preening, Montrose Point, Chicago, 2019

   
       
  Rough-winged Swallow, golondrina aliaserrada (Stelgidopteryx serripennis)
Akator Expeditions
 
   
 
About

Apr 29, 2011

   
       
  Northern Rough winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis)
Guillermo Saborio
 
   
 
About

May 23, 2017

The nest was close, the insect in his beak was probably food for its chicks.

El nido estaba cerca, el insecto en su pico era probablemente alimento para sus polluelos.

Tour con Ernesto Carman de http://www.getyourbirds.com

   
       
  Swallow bird sound / call / song | Northern rough-winged
GoTrails
 
   
 
About

Mar 27, 2020

Swallow bird sound / call / song | Northern rough-winged | chirp, noise, singing | audio, clip, HD video | Effect, Documentary, Facts, Habitat, Behavior, Habits, Information, Identification | Stelgidopteryx serripennis, golondrina aserrada, Hirondelle à ailes hérissées | martin, saw-wing | Wildlife, Animal | #gotrails, #swallows, #swallowbird, #birdcalls, #birdsounds, #birdcall, #birdsong

   
       
  Northern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis) - Feeding time
Nature's Wild Things
 
   
 
About

Jun 8, 2017

Northern Rough-winged Swallow (Stelgidopteryx serripennis)
Feeding Time!
Video 30 sec long 100% speed - Audio none
Cabarrus County, North Carolina, United States
Photo Walk - 05-26-2017

   
       

 

Camcorder

         
Visitor Sightings
   
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Lynn Rubey
5/15/2020

Location: Big Stone National Wildlife Refuge

A Northern Rough-winged Swallow in The Big Stone National Wildlife Refuge in Lac qui Parle County on May 15, 2020.

Northern Rough-winged Swallow


 
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Created: 6/14/2020

Last Updated:

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