The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Lesser Striped Swallow

Afrikaans name: Kleinstreepswael

Lesser Striped Swallow

Lesser Striped Swallow

Photo © Steven Herbert

Hirundo abyssinica

During spring and summer the Lesser Striped Swallow is a common sight along the eastern regions of South Africa.

They are smaller and more brightly coloured than the similar Greater Striped Swallow.

Lesser Striped Swallows are found in open areas such as grasslands, parks, gardens, farmlands as well as along forest margins.

Most of its prey are insects which are caught in flight. It will however take some food items on the ground with caterpillars being a favourite. They will occasionally eat fruit and seeds.

The swallows have certainly taken to building their mud nests on man-made structures. These could be houses, bridges or culverts. The main requirement is that there is an overhang. They do also breed under rock overhangs or even in cavities in trees. 3 eggs are normally laid. The interesting thing about their nesting behaviour is that the pair will often return to the same nest year after year.

References and further reading

The Sandton Field Guide - Author: Sandton Nature Conservation Society - Published: 1982 - Page: 55

Wild About Johannesburg - Author: Duncan Butchart - Published: 1995 - Page: 43

Wildlife of Southern Africa - Author: Martin Withers and David Hosking - Published: 2011 - Page: 140

Southern African Bird Names Explained - Author: Charles Clinning - Published: 1989 - Page: 72

The Birds of South Africa - 1st Edition - Author: Dr. Austin Roberts - Published: 1949 - Page: 208

Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 4th Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Published: 2011 - Page: 296

Roberts Birds of Southern Africa - 6th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Published: 1993 - Page: 456

Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 1st Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Published: 1993 - Page: 282

Roberts Birds of South Africa - 4th Edition - Author: McLachlan and Liversidge - Published: 1981 - Page: 355

Roberts Birds of Southern Africa - 5th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Published: 1985 - Page: 462

Roberts Birds of South Africa - 3rd Edition - Author: McLachlan and Liversidge - Published: 1975 - Page: 344

Newmans Garden Birds - Author: Ken Newman - Published: 1991 - Page: 46

Roberts Birds of South Africa - 2nd edition - Author: McLachlan and Liversidge - Published: 1957 - Page: 268

Newmans Birds of Southern Africa - 7th Edition - Author: Ken Newman - Published: 2000 - Page: 228

Newmans Birds of Southern Africa - 1st Edition - Author: Ken Newman - Published: 1984 - Page: 228

Meeting with Birds - Author: Tom Spence - Published: 1986 - Page: 62

Garden Birds in South Africa - Author: Duncan Butchart - Published: 2017 - Page: 85

Garden Birds of Southern Africa - Author: P. Ginn & G. McIlleron - Published: 1981 - Page: 50

Geoff Lockwoods Garden Birds of Southern Africa - Author: Geoff Lockwood - Published: 0 - Page: 115

Common Birds of the North Coast - Author: Bing Comrie - Published: 2005 - Page: 56

Field Guide to the Birds of Kruger National Park - Author: Ian Sinclair and Ian Whyte - Published: 1991 - Page: 142

Illustrated Guide to the Game Parks and Nature Reserves of SA - 2nd edn - Author: Readers Digest - Published: 1991 - Page: 411

Ian Sinclairs Field Guide to the Birds of Southern Africa - 2nd Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair - Published: 1988 - Page: 206

Field Guide to the Cradle of Humankind - Author: B. Hilton-Barber & Prof. L. R. Berger - Published: 2004 - Page: 183

Collins Illustrated Checklist - Birds of Southern Africa - 1st edition - Author: Ber van Perlo - Published: 1999 - Page: 52

Birds of the Transvaal - Author: Tarboton, Kemp and Kemp - Published: 1987 - Page: 173

Birds of the Transkei - Author: C.D. Quickelberge - Published: 1989 - Page: 84

Birds of the South Western Cape - Author: Joy Frandsen - Published: 0 - Page: 152

Bird Atlas of Natal - Author: Digby Cyrus and Nigel Robson - Published: 1980 - Page: 188

Birds of Southern Africa - Kruger National Park - Author: Kenneth Newman - Published: 1985 - Page: 114

Animals of the Kruger National Park - Author: G. de Graaff - Published: 1987 - Page: 100

A First Guide to South African Birds - 6th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Published: 1959 - Page: 85

A First Guide to South African Birds - 7th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Published: 1975 - Page: 85

A Field Guide to the Birds of Southern Africa - 2nd Edition - Author: O.P.M. Prozesky - Published: 1983 - Page: 206

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