Induced alloparental care in common swifts (APUS APUS)

Amnonn Hahn, Reuven Yosef

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Common Swift, despite being considered to be of Least Concern, is declining in many areas of its breeding range. In several countries, nest-box programs have been initiated to counter these declines. In most cases, when nestlings fall out of their nests, they are taken to rehabilitation centers. Raising and caring for Common Swift nestlings is not easy. Altricial nestlings, unlike precocial young, do not eat independently and require individual "force feeding", which can be successfully done only by highly trained and fully dedicated specialists. However, it is not cheap and when not done professionally, usually results in low survival rates. We experimented with introducing the rescued young into active nests, with similarly aged nestlings, and found that they were readily accepted and all five of the young fledged successfully. We recommend alloparenting as the preferred option when precocial nestlings are rescued and active nests of other pairs are available.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-22
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Ecology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 4 Sep 2020


  • Nest-box
  • Rehabilitation
  • Rescue
  • Survival


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