Little Swift

Apus affinis (JE Gray, 1830) LITSW 8000
Family: Apodiformes > Apodidae

A small swift with noticeable white rump and throat patches, this is a rare visitor from North Africa, with records peaking in May.

While most of the records have come from southern Britain, individuals have been recorded north to Shetland.

Select a topic for more facts and statistics about the Little Swift

  • Breeding
  • Winter
213 records observations recorded by BTO surveyors
213 records


213 records observations recorded by BTO surveyors
213 records



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Status and Trends

Population size and trends and patterns of distribution based on BTO surveys and atlases with data collected by BTO volunteers.


This species can be found on the following statutory and conservation listings and schedules.


We have no population estimates for this scarce species.


This species is a rare vagrant and was recorded during Bird Atlas 2007–11 as shown on the map.

Little Swift breeding distribution 2008-11
Britain and Ireland Breeding Distribution 2008-2011.
More from the Atlas Mapstore.

Occupied 10-km squares in UK


Information about movement and migration based on online bird portals (e.g. BirdTrack), Ringing schemes and tracking studies.


View a summary of recoveries in the Online Ringing Report.


Lifecycle and body size information about Little Swift, including statistics on nesting, eggs and lifespan based on BTO ringing and nest recording data.


Sample sizes are too small to report Productivity and Nesting statistics for this species.


Sample sizes are too small to report Biometrics for this species.

Feather measurements and photos on featherbase


For information in another language (where available) click on a linked name

Welsh: Gwennol Ddu Fach
Catalan: falciot cuablanc comú
Czech: rorýs domovní
Danish: Lille Sejler
Dutch: Huisgierzwaluw
Estonian: väikepiiritaja e. väike-piirpääsuke
Finnish: pikkukiitäjä
French: Martinet des maisons
German: Haussegler
Hungarian: kis sarlósfecske
Icelandic: Skíðsvölungur
Irish: Gabhlán Beag
Italian: Rondone indiano
Latvian: maza svire
Lithuanian: mažasis ciurlys
Norwegian: Småseiler
Polish: jerzyk maly
Portuguese: andorinhão-pequeno
Slovak: dáždovník malý
Slovenian: mali hudournik
Spanish: Vencejo moro
Swedish: stubbstjärtseglare

Links to more information from

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