Vaux's Swift Life History


Habitat ForestsNests in coniferous or mixed forest. Forages in forest openings, especially above streams.Back to top


Food InsectsFlying insects and some spiders.Back to top


Nest Placement

Nest Tree

Nest Description

Half-cup made of small twigs glued to vertical surface with the bird's sticky saliva. Nests communally, usually in hollow trees, less commonly in chimneys.

Nesting Facts
Clutch Size:3-7 eggs
Egg Description:White.
Condition at Hatching:Naked and helpless.
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Behavior Aerial ForagerForages in the air, taking insects in its bill.Back to top


Conservation Low ConcernVaux's Swift declined across most of its range by almost 2% per year between 1966 and 2014, resulting in a cumulative decline of 57%, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. Partners in Flight estimates a global breeding population of 600,000, with 41% spending some part of the year in the U.S., 52% in Mexico, and 14% breeding in Canada. The species rates an 11 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score. Vaux's Swift is not on the 2014 State of the Birds Watch List. Logging of large-diameter trees in old-growth forests eliminates nest sites.Back to top


Bull, Evelyn L. and Charles T. Collins. 2007. Vaux's Swift (Chaetura vauxi), version 2.0. In The Birds of North America (P. G. Rodewald, editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, New York, USA.

Lutmerding, J. A. and A. S. Love. Longevity records of North American birds. Version 2015.2. Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Bird Banding Laboratory 2015.

North American Bird Conservation Initiative. 2014. The State of the Birds 2014 Report. US Department of Interior, Washington, DC, USA.

Partners in Flight (2017). Avian Conservation Assessment Database. 2017.

Sauer, J. R., J. E. Hines, J. E. Fallon, K. L. Pardieck, Jr. Ziolkowski, D. J. and W. A. Link. The North American Breeding Bird Survey, results and analysis 1966-2013 (Version 1.30.15). USGS Patuxtent Wildlife Research Center 2014b. Available from

Sibley, D. A. (2014). The Sibley guide to birds, second edition. Alfred A. Knopf, New York, USA.

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