Little Swift
Apus affinis

– very small Swift, body smaller than House Sparrow
– breeding population in SW WP, vagrant in Europe
– Northern populations migratory


Little Swift Apus affinis aerobates
BIF2834, 07/12/2018, NP Tsavo West, Kenya, Roland Neumann
– very small and compact
– fairly blunt wings
– if only glimpsed from above it could been mistaken for Common House Martin, but note the much faster wing beats


Little Swift Apus affinis aerobates
BIF2835, 09/12/2018, NP Tsavo West, Kenya, Roland Neumann
– very short, square-cut tail
– depending on the flight action, wings can appear slim and pointed


Little Swift Apus affinis aerobates
BIF2836, 09/12/2018, NP Tsavo West, Kenya, Roland Neumann
– from below not as dark as White-rumped Swift
– fairly large white throat patch
– blunt rear end


Little Swift Apus affinis aerobates
BIF2837, 09/12/2018, NP Tsavo West, Kenya, Roland Neumann
– appears shorter-winged and more compact than other swifts


Little Swift Apus affinis aerobates
BIF2838, 01/12/2018, NP Tsavo West, Kenya, Roland Neumann
– white rump extends to rear flanks (restricted to back in White-rumped Swift)


Little Swift Apus affinis aerobates
BIF2839, 10/12/2018, NP Tsavo West, Kenya, Roland Neumann
– when fanned out the tail is fan-shaped


Little Swift Apus affinis aerobates
BIF2840, 07/12/2018, NP Tsavo West, Kenya, Roland Neumann
– white rump larger than in White-rumped Swift


Little Swift Apus affinis aerobates, calls in flight
BIF2869, 06/12/2018, Ngulia, Kenya, Roland Neumann

voice:
– an average 5 sec. long, downslurred series of calls
– the shape of the elements varies between series
– calls resemble Alpine Swift, but sound less powerful

comparison species:
Pacific Swift (v)
White-rumped Swift (v)
Common House Martin (v)
Alpine Swift (a)

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