Swallows, Bulbuls and Others
Swallows and Martins (Hirundinidae), Bulbuls (Pycnonotidae), Long-tailed Tits (Aegithalidae) Leaf-Warblers (Phylloscopidae) are part of Sylvioidea placed in Passeriformes order, see Taxonomy note at the end of this page. These are small to medium-sized birds. The swallows and others inhabit a wide range of habitat including woods, grassy areas, scrubland, and wetlands, while the bulbuls prefer forest, woodlands, and scrub areas.
Swallows, Martins, Bulbuls, Long-tailed Tits and Leaf-warblers
Swallows, Martins, Bulbuls, Long-tailed Tits and Leaf-warblers Notes
All featured species are ‘Red List 2019’ assessed as ‘Least Concern’. Swallows and martins are cosmopolitan birds that I’ve photographed in Trinidad, Singapore, and Australasia. As they are aerial feeders, they often perch to look for prey, rest, and groom. The featured leaf-warbler feeds on insects and spiders while the long-tailed tit feeds on invertebrate and occasionally seeds.
I’ve identified the flying swallow image as a sand martin, which is a rare migrant visitor to Singapore. The bird was one of a small flock. I’m not sure whether sand martins have white tail-patches. The only species I found with white patches is the Crag Martin albeit they are much longer and if it were this species, it would be well outside its normal range.
Except for the ‘Critically Endangered’ straw-headed bulbul, all other featured species are ‘Red List 2019’ assessed as ‘Least Concern’. The only endemic is the Seychelles bulbul. I photographed the other Asian clade bulbul images in Malaysia and Singapore.
Swallows, Martins, Bulbuls, Long-tailed Tits and Leaf-warblers Taxonomy
The figure shows a simplified taxonomy family tree relevant to the Swallows, Martins, Bulbuls, Long-tailed Tits and Leaf-warblers photo album.
J Boyd’s Taxonomy in Flux Checklist places these families in Sylvioidea, which comprises:
(a) Swallows and Martins (Hirundinidae),
(b) Bulbuls (Pycnonotidae),
(c) Long-tailed Tits (Aegithalidae),
(d) and Leaf-warblers (Phylloscopidae).
Sylvioidea includes Leaf-warblers (Phylloscopidae) split from Sylviidae together with many existing families in the Sibley and Monroe and other authorities’ checklists.