Most beautiful small birds - Sykalo Eugen 2024

Grey-rumped Treeswift (Hemiprocne longipennis)


  • Species name: Grey-rumped Treeswift
  • Scientific name: Hemiprocne longipennis
  • Family: Hemiprocnidae (Treeswifts)
  • Order: Apodiformes (Swifts and Hummingbirds)
  • Subclass: Neornithes (Modern birds)
  • Class: Aves (Birds)


  • Size: Medium-sized swift, about 19-21 cm (7.5-8.3 in) long with a wingspan of 35-37 cm (13.8-14.6 in).
  • Body shape: Slender and streamlined, with long, pointed wings and a long, deeply forked tail.
  • Plumage color:

Upperparts: Dark grey, with a paler grey rump and slightly darker wings.

Underparts: White, with a pale grey breast band.

Dark eyes.

Tiny, black bill.

Short, black legs.


  • Method of feeding: Catches insects in flight, often foraging high in the forest canopy.
  • Reproduction: Builds small nests of twigs and saliva on horizontal branches. Lays 1-2 white eggs. Both parents care for the young.
  • Movement: Resident in most of its range, with some local movements in response to food availability.
  • Communication: High-pitched calls and twitters.


  • Habitat: Forests, woodlands, and wooded areas along rivers and streams.
  • Diet: Insects, including flies, beetles, and moths.
  • Hunting methods: Flies gracefully through the air, catching insects with its small beak.

Distribution: Found in Southeast Asia, from southern Myanmar and Thailand to Indonesia and the Philippines.

Grey-rumped Treeswift

The Grey-rumped Treeswift - a feathered ghost zipping through the emerald corridors of Southeast Asian rainforests! This seemingly ethereal creature might appear like a fleeting shadow at first glance, but beneath its sleek lines and mesmerizing glides lies a treasure trove of fascinating facts and adaptations that will leave you captivated by this avian master of the wind and aerial acrobatics.

Masters of the Glide: Forget flapping wings; the Grey-rumped Treeswift is a champion of effortless gliding. They spend most of their lives soaring through the rainforest canopy, propelled by the wind and their impressive wingspan, barely a beat of their wings disturbing the still air. Imagine them as feathered gliders with built-in miniature sails!

Hidden Feasting Technique: Don't underestimate their aerial agility! Grey-rumped Treeswifts are expert insectivores, snatching flying insects on the wing with lightning-fast maneuvers. They twist, turn, and dart through the air like feathered fighter jets with built-in miniature nets!

Unexpected Social Swifts: While some swifts are solitary, Grey-rumped Treeswifts live in loose-knit groups. They soar together, share feeding grounds, and even engage in playful aerial chases — talk about feathered sky dancers with built-in squadrons!

Hidden Nesting Secrets: Their nests are miniature masterpieces. Woven from moss, lichen, and spiderwebs, they hang precariously from branches, often concealed amongst the dense foliage. These feathered architects even incorporate feathers and leaves for camouflage, creating leafy hideouts for their chicks.

Symbiotic Symphony: Grey-rumped Treeswifts play a vital role in the rainforest ecosystem. By controlling insect populations, they help maintain the health of the canopy, contributing to the delicate balance of life in the trees. These feathered pest controllers contribute to the flourishing of plants and other creatures.

Cultural Charmers: In some Southeast Asian cultures, the Grey-rumped Treeswift is associated with freedom, agility, and the spirit of the rainforest. Its silent glides and effortless movements inspire awe and respect, making it a treasured symbol of the region's vibrant ecosystems.

Unexpected Aerial Diversity: Did you know? There are several subspecies of Grey-rumped Treeswift, each with subtle variations in plumage and wingspan. From the long-winged giants of Borneo to the shorter-winged residents of Sumatra, these feathered gliders paint the rainforest skies with diversity.