A photo of a Rock Martin (Ptyonoprogne fuligula)
Rock Martin

Rock Martin

Ptyonoprogne fuligula

The rock martin (Ptyonoprogne fuligula) is a small passerine bird in the swallow family that is resident in central and southern Africa. It breeds mainly in the mountains, but also at lower altitudes, especially in rocky areas and around towns, and, unlike most swallows, it is often found far from water. It is 12โ€“15 cm (4.7โ€“5.9 in) long, with mainly brown plumage, paler-toned on the upper breast and underwing coverts, and with white "windows" on the spread tail in flight. The sexes are similar in appearance, but juveniles have pale fringes to the upperparts and flight feathers. The former northern subspecies are smaller, paler, and whiter-throated than southern African forms, and are now usually split as a separate species, the pale crag martin. The rock martin hunts along cliff faces for flying insects using a slow flight with much gliding. Its call is a soft twitter. The rock martin builds a deep bowl nest on a sheltered horizontal surface, or a neat quarter-sphere against a vertical rock face or wall. The nest is constructed with mud pellets and lined with grass or feathers, and may be built on natural sites under cliff overhangs or on man-made structures such as buildings, dam walls, culverts and bridges. It is often reused for subsequent broods or in later years. The rock martin is a solitary breeder, and is not gregarious, but small groups may breed close together in suitable locations. The two or three eggs of a typical clutch are white with brown and grey blotches, and are incubated by both adults for 16โ€“19 days prior to hatching. Both parents then feed the chicks. Fledging takes another 22โ€“24 days, but the young birds will return to the nest to roost for a few days after the first flight.
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Rock Martins on Birda

Photos

Sightings

A map showing the sighting location
๐Ÿฆข
Trevor Kleyn
Saturday 18 Mar 2023 - 4:40am
South Africa
A photo of a Rock Martin photographed in Geelbek Information Center South Africa
๐Ÿบ
Shaun & Kiera Lilford
Sunday 12 Mar 2023 - 10:32am
South Africa
A map showing the sighting location
๐Ÿฆข
Buzzy Joell
Friday 03 Mar 2023 - 5:50am
Namibia
A photo of a Rock Martin photographed in  South Africa
๐Ÿพ
Sharon Bateson
Wednesday 22 Feb 2023 - 5:58pm
South Africa
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