Russian: Рыжепоясничная ласточка
Монгол алтанхараацай, Монгол хараацай
Japanese: コシアカツバメ (Koshi-aka-tsubame)
Body length: 14-19 cm. Breeds on cliffs
in mountain areas and along steep coasts, sometimes also in cavities on ruins,
under bridges etc. Migrant, winters in tropical Africa. Builds a closed nest of
mud with entrance tunnel, fixed to roof of cave, recess or similar site. Rare
but regular vagrant to Britain & Ireland, mostly Mar-May and Aug-Nov. Often
hunts insects high up in remote mountain districts.
Resembles Barn Swallow, having similar size and shape with long, pointed
tail-streamers, but immediately told by pale rump, which at distance can look
white (cf. House Martin) but at close ranges is light rusty-red at top and
somewhat paler (sometimes whitish) to rear. Close views also reveal-sides are pale,
not blue-black. Wings and tail dark brownish-black (tail without Barn Swallow’s
white windos), mantle, scapulars and crown shiny blue-black. Red-rumped Swallows
in flight are also identifiable from below at distance by their pale throat and
breast and squared-off black undertail-coverts (white on Barn Swallow). At
close range, underparts are seen to be pale rusty-buff or buff-white with very
discreet, thin streaks. Flight intermediate between Barn Swallow and House
Martin, clipped wing-beats but also a lot of gliding on straight wings.
Juvenile: Shorter tail streamers, less blue gloss above, buff-white tips to
tertials and many wing-coverts.