Swallowtail Bird: The Amazing Raptor That Seeks Your Attention More Than Your Wife!

The swallowtail bird is a raptor bird species that inhabit the tropical regions of the world. It has many species around Australia, South East Asia, Africa, and Central America. They are predominantly found in the rain forest but they can also be found in mangroves, marshland, and even urbanized areas.

Swallowtail birds have long swallow-tail-shaped feathers which helps them with flying skills. They have sharp claws on both front feet for ground activities. For example, during hunting, it can hold its prey firmly to eat later or swallow whole if needed. The swallowtail has huge eyesight to help it hunt during daytime as well as nighttime due to its dark black coloration. It also hunts by sound mainly but sight comes in handy if food is scarce.

Swallowtail Bird
Swallow-tailed Kite in Flight from Andy Morffew in Itchen Abbas, Hampshire, UK – Flickr

How Swallowtail Bird Breeds & Raises Its Young

Swallowtail birds are extremely dedicated parents. They build nests that are cups shaped and mainly made of twigs, leaves, and grasses. The swallowtail bird can use available materials around to build its home. It can create a nest anywhere so long as there is enough space for the swallowtail baby birds when they hatch. The swallowtail bird prefers to lay eggs on the top branch but will also settle for large branches or poles which are stable enough to hold their brood young ones overhead after hatching time.

The breeding season starts from February till June. Males’ swallowtails are highly territorial during breeding times. If other swallowtails come too close it’s known that fight begins and it’s a fierce battle to protect the swallowtail bird mating rights. The swallowtail can mate with 3-4 partners in one year and they usually lay more than one clutch of eggs per season. After mating, female swallowtails build nests on their own and incubates two or three beautiful white eggs on their own for approximately 4 weeks until swallowtail baby birds hatch out from them.

What Swallow-tailed Kites Eat

Swallowtail birds are omnivores in nature which means they eat both plants and animals as food. When hunting during dawn and dusk time they prey upon small mammals such as rodents, insects, reptiles, etc. They also feed on fruits, nectar, flowers petals, and leaves of various plant species. From to time, these magnificent raptors swallow their entire prey because swallowtail birds swallow large prey whole instead of slicing them into pieces.

Swallowtails are known to be extremely agile and fast flyers. They have been clocked at speeds greater than 100 km/h during flight times thus making swallowtails superb hunters as well as pets that stay close with their owners. As swallowtails love traveling, they fly off sometimes for days so swallow tail bird owners must be able to cope up with this vagrant behavior of their pets, or else there is a chance that your swallowtail bird might not come back home at all.

Are Swallowtail Birds Good As Pets

Swallowtails are very popular birds to keep at home as pets. Their playful behavior and their ability to mimic words spoken by humans make swallowtails the ideal pet for people looking forward to having a talking pet friend at home. Swallowtail birds can be trained and made to follow some simple and easy steps to get used to living with human companions.

Swallowtail birds are listed in the category of least concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (ICUN). This means swallow tail bird populations are stable and it is not an endangered species. However, the swallowtail trade has been a major threat to the swallowtail bird population as many swallowtails that were captured alive died within one year due to the lack of proper facilities and care that was needed for these raptors during transportation from destinations such as Africa, America, Australia, etc. Nowadays swallow tail bird owners tend to adopt captive breeding methods which make a more reliable source of swallowtail babies for adoption instead of capturing them from the wild.

Housing swallowtails is not an easy task if proper facilities such as perches, water containers, bird toys, etc., are not available for swallowtails in the house where they will stay. For swallowtails, it’s always better to keep them in large-sized cages or aviaries which offers room for swallowtails to fly freely without any problems arising from lack of space. If you find swallowtail birds flying above your head or around the room, that’s quite normal behavior but swallow tails must be provided with enough space to fly freely inside cages because swallowtails are large-sized birds.

Swallowtail bird owners must ensure that their flock always has enough food as they tend to eat a lot of food as compared to other pet bird species. For swallowtails to lead healthy lives, their cage must be clean from droppings daily with regular feeding of fresh fruits, vegetables, insects, and some pellets gives these birds adequate nutrition.

Swallowtail bird diet may also include small rodents such as mice, rabbits, etc., which make good sources of protein-rich food for swallowtails living in homes as pets. As swallowtail birds love traveling swallow tail bird owners must have a backup plan in case swallowtails fly off for a few days and swallowtails must be kept under observation that there are no signs of infections or parasites. Swallowtail birds can become very depressed when going through these conditions thus swallow tail bird owners must ensure their pet swallow tails get the love and attention they deserve.

Swallowtails are brilliant hunters in the wild but in homes, swallowtails will need proper training to learn not to hunt other pet birds living inside aviaries with swallowtails. Any time you find a swallow-tailed bird chasing other pet birds, it’s advisable to take them out from cages and keep them isolated until swallowtails get used to their presence. Being a raptor bird, it takes some time for a “Swallow-tailed Kite” to get friendly and convenient with the other birds in a communal living cage.

Julian Goldie - Owner of ChiperBirds.com

Julian Goldie

I'm a bird enthusiast and creator of Chipper Birds, a blog sharing my experience caring for birds. I've traveled the world bird watching and I'm committed to helping others with bird care. Contact me at [email protected] for assistance.