Birds of North Carolina:
their Distribution and Abundance
Common Swift - Apus apus
Apodidae Members:
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General Comments One of the more remarkable records for the state was the photographing of an unusual swift at Pea Island NWR (Dare) on 7 Oct 2017. The somewhat poor quality photos -- excellent photos of swifts can be difficult to take owing to their fast and darting flight, always on the wing -- were still good enough for European birders to identify to species as a Common Swift. This is an Old World species, quite numerous across much of Europe, but migrating to winter in the southern parts of Africa. Thus, some individuals do migrate along the western coast of Africa and thus could presumably be picked up by a tropical wave moving westward from Africa to eastern North America. However it got to the state, the record was accepted by the NC BRC on a second vote and the photographs helped to place the species on the Definitive List [Chat 83:17 link]. Photos are available on the Carolina Bird Club Photo Gallery.
Breeding Status Nonbreeder
NC BRC List Definitive
State Status
U.S. Status
State Rank SA
Global Rank G5
Coastal Plain One record (see above).
Piedmont No records.
Mountains No records.
Finding Tips
Attribution LeGrand[2019-04-19]
NC Map
Map depicts all counties with a report (transient or resident) for the species.
Click on county for list of all known species.