Species of the Month: July 2016


House Martin Delichon urbica


© Gavin Vella (http://www.gavinvella.com)

A close relative of Swallows, House Martins are summer visitors from Africa. The House Martin is a small bird with glossy blue-black upper parts and pure white under parts. It has a distinctive white rump with a forked tail. They can most often be seen hunting insects on the wing, but some lucky people may also have them nesting in their building eaves.

The House Martin is a declining species, a phenomenon which BTO is currently investigating through their House Martin Survey. SEWBReC are particularly keen to know of nesting sites, as roofing and other common building works can unwittingly cause disturbance or destroy nests.

More information about House Martins is available from RSPB and BTO.

This map on the Data Access Tool shows the distribution of Dark-edged Bee-fly at a 10km square level for the whole of Wales. Zoom in or click on a 10km square to see the 1km square record distribution.

If you spot a House Martin during July (or at any other time of year), please send us the record, ideally via our Species of the Month form on SEWBReCORD (nb. you will need to be signed into SEWBReCORD to use this link). Instructions on how to submit records are available here