Living Bird Magazine
Vaux's SwiftChaetura vauxi
- ORDER: Caprimulgiformes
- FAMILY: Apodidae
A bird of the Pacific Northwest, Vaux's Swift spends almost all of daylight hours in the air foraging for insects. It is very similar to the Chimney Swift, a common species of the eastern United States, in appearance and habits.More ID Info
- Vencejo de Vaux (Spanish)
- Martinet de Vaux (French)
- Cool Facts
- Vaux's Swift is the smallest swift in North America.
- Vaux's Swifts roost communally, by the hundreds or sometimes the thousands, presumably to conserve heat. They let their body temperature drop and become torpid on cold nights, reviving in the warmth of day.
- Vaux's Swifts descend into their roost tree essentially at once, spiraling down in a very dramatic rush at nightfall.
- Vaux's Swift is named for William S. Vaux, a member of the Academy of Natural Sciences and a friend of John K. Townsend, who first described the species. The name is pronounced "vawks," not "voh."
- The oldest recorded Vaux's Swift was at least 5 years, 1 month old when it was recaptured and rereleased during banding operations in Venezuela.