|Black-and-Rufous Swallow; Illustation|
by Richard Bowdler Sharpe
What's so special about it?The Black-and-Rufous Swallow (Hirundo nigrorufa) is just one of many non-descript bird species living a largely-ignored existence in remote parts of Africa. It's not a flashy drawcard species like the Shoebill Stork (Baeleniceps rex) or Secretary Bird (Sagittarius serpentarius) that lures in birdwatchers from all over the world. When I searched for images of this humble Swallow on the internet, I could not find a single published picture verifying its existence. Next time you're on safari, you might find that a photograph of some small obscure bush bird brings you more fame and glory than the millionth photo of a Lion!
Where can I see one?It is now thought that the Swallow family evolved in Africa as small, tunnel-nesting birds which then dispersed around the globe thanks to their mastery of flight. This is because Africa still has a very high proportion of the 83 Swallow species known to exist. The Black-and-Rufous Swallow is one of these 'mother country' birds, found on the wetlands and open grounds of Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Zambia.
Is there anything similar near Brisbane?
|Welcome Swallow; Illustration by |
Black-and-Rufous Swallow illustration courtesy of Wikipedia Commons.
Welcome Swallow illustration courtesy of the Australian National Botanic Gardens website.