Halmahera Swiftlet (aerodramus infuscatus)

Halmahera Swiftlet

[order] APODIFORMES | [family] Apodidae | [latin] aerodramus infuscatus | [UK] Halmahera Swiftlet | [FR] Salangane des Moluques | [DE] Molukkensalangane | [ES] Salangana Moluquena | [NL] Molukse Salangaan


Monotypic species

Physical charateristics

Black-brown upperparts with rump uniform or slightly pale, has distinct grey-white rump band.
Pale-brown underparts and Forked tail.

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 10 cm size max.: 11 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 0   eggs min.: 0  
      eggs max.: 0  


Australasia : Halmahera


Moist lowland forest and montanes. Generally higher than other Swiftlets.


Not much information about nesting. Believed to make a nest with vegetable matter, attached to a cave wall.

Feeding habits

Feeds on insects, taken in flight. Noted to feed above canopy while Glossy Swiftlet is feeding beneath canopy level.


Milvus milvus is endemic to the western Palearctic, with the European population of 19,000-25,000 pairs encompassing 95% of its global breeding range. It breeds from Spain and Portugal east through central Europe to Ukraine, north to southern Sweden, Latvia and the UK, and south to southern Italy. Populations also breed in northern Morocco. Populations winter within the western breeding range, as well as in isolated patches southeast to eastern Turkey and south to northern Tunisia and Algeria. The three largest populations (in Germany, France and Spain, which together hold more than 75% of the global population) all declined during 1990-2000, and overall the species declined by almost 20% over the ten years1. German populations declined by 25-30% between 1991 and 1997, but have remained stable since then with the populations of the northern foothills of the Harz Mountains (the most densely populated part of its range) suffering an estimated 50% decline from 1991-2001. In Spain the species showed an overall decline in breeding population of up to 43% for the period 1994 to 2001-02, and surveys of wintering birds in 2003-04 suggest a similarly large decline in core wintering areas6. The Balearic Islands population has declined from 41-47 breeding pairs in 1993 to just 10 in 2003. In France, breeding populations have decreased in the northeast, but seem to be stable in southwest and central France and Corsica. Detailed monitoring has not been carried out, but comparison between counts in 1980 and 2000 suggest a decrease of up to 80% in some areas, during which time the species’ range in France decreased by 15%. However, populations elsewhere are stable or undergoing increases. In Sweden the species has increased from 30-50 pairs in the 1970s to 1,200 breeding pairs in 2003. In Wales in 2004, from 375 occupied territories identified at least 216 pairs were thought to have hatched eggs and 200 pairs reared at least 286 young. In Switzerland, populations increased during the 1990s, and have now stabilized. The species inhabits broadleaf woodlands, valleys and wetland edges, to 800 m. The main threats to this species are poisoning, through illegal direct poisoning and indirect poisoning due to pesticides, particularly in the wintering ranges in France and Spain, and changes in agricultural practices causing a reduction in food resources. Other threats include electrocution, hunting and trapping, deforestation, egg-collection (on a local scale) and possibly competition with the generally more successful Black Kite M. migrans.


Thought to be resident or nomadic within range.

Distribution map

Halmahera Swiftlet distribution range map

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