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andorinha das barreiras. riparia riparia. sand martin.


SAND MARTIN
Riparia riparia

Description

Smaller than the other swallows and martins, with brownish plumage on the head, back, wings and tail. The primaries and retrices have a darker colouration. Throat and pale underparts are separated by a distinctive brownish chest band. Juveniles are distinguished from adults by the lighter shades of the upperparts. This species has no sexual dimorphism.

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Subspecies

There are five subspecies of Sand Martin, and in Portugal the nominal subspecies Riparia riparia riparia occurs.

Scientific Name Transcription

'Riparia' originates from the Latin term ripa meaning 'margin'. In the original description of this species in 1758, this species was first named Hirundo riparia. Later, in the refinement of Linnaeus' work, the genus Ri​paria was created. This species, as a type-species, gets its genus name in duplicate, thus forming a tautonym.

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26 to 29 cm

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11 to 16 g

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10 YEARS

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FEB | OCT

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1 to 2 CLUTCHES

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4 to 5 EGGS

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Distribution and Ecology

Summer species in North America, Europe and the temperate regions of Asia; and wintering species in South America, sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia. In Portugal, it can be seen between February and October and is distributed from north to south, with a very fragmented distribution. This species is most easily observed in the vicinity of their colonies, where excavates the nest in sandy embankments. Occasionally nests in human structures, such as concrete walls with holes.

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Conservation

The Sand Martin, the only species of swallow in our country that does not use the buildings we construct for nesting, has the conservation status of Least Concern (LC), both in our country and internationally. The lack of quantitative data does not allow us to determine with certainty the population trends of this and other species.

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