Barn swallow Hirundo rustica, photographed by Jiří Bohdal.

Belongs within: Hirundinidae.

The genus Hirundo includes the barn swallow H. rustica, welcome swallow H. neoxena, and related species. Authors have differed in the circumscription of this genus: at its broadest, it may include nearly all the hirundine swallows. Species of Hirundo as recognised here generally have blue upperparts, rufous throats and pale underparts, and build their nests from mud as open cups. A number of species that originally nested on rock faces have adapted to human development by using walls and beams of buildings as nesting sites. The barn swallow H. rustica is widespread in Eurasia, Africa and the Americas, breeding in northern parts of the range and overwintering in southern regions. The pearl-breasted swallow H. dimidiata is a southern African species with glossy blue upperparts and grey-white underparts.

<==Hirundo Linnaeus 1758CC10 [incl. Biblis Lesson 1837B94; Biblidinae]
    |--H. dimidiataBKB15
    `--+--+--H. leucosoma Swains. 1837BKB15, F43a
       |  `--+--H. cucullataJF06 [=Cecropis cucullataBKB15]
       |     `--H. megaensisBKB15
       `--+--+--H. atrocaeruleaBKB15
          |  `--H. nigrorufaBKB15
          `--+--+--H. neoxena Gould 1842BKB15, CC10 [incl. H. frontalisCH89]
             |  |    |--H. n. neoxena [=H. tahitica neoxena]CC10
             |  |    |--H. n. carteri (Mathews 1912) [=Chelidon javanica carteri]L03
             |  |    `--H. n. parsonsiM03
             |  `--H. tahiticaBKB15
             |       |--H. t. tahiticaL03
             |       |--H. t. ambiens Mayr 1934L03
             |       `--H. t. javanica Sparrman 1789 [incl. H. t. viridissima Meise 1929]L03
             `--+--H. albigularis Strickland 1849BKB15, L03 [incl. H. albigularis microptera Hartert 1904L03]
                `--+--H. smithiiBKB15
                   `--+--H. nigritaBKB15
                      `--+--*H. rustica Linnaeus 1758CC10, BKB15, L03
                         |    |--H. r. rusticaL03 (see below for synonymy)
                         |    |--H. r. erythrogasterFS55
                         |    `--H. r. gutturalisJ06
                         `--+--H. angolensisBKB15
                            `--+--H. aethiopica Blanford 1869BKB15, L03 [incl. H. aethiopica fulvipectus Amadon 1954L03]
                               `--H. lucidaBKB15
                                    |--H. l. lucidaL03
                                    `--H. l. rothschildi Neumann 1904L03
Hirundo incertae sedis:
  H. americanusJ23
  H. aprica Feduccia 1967U93
  H. borbonicaSch66
  H. capensisScl66
  H. domicolaJT12
  H. filiferaE42
  H. fossilis Giebel 1847M02
  H. fuliginosaJT12
  H. leucopygiaF43b
  H. obsoletaJT12
  H. paludicolaB93
  H. pelasgiaJ23
  H. perditaJT12
  H. purpureaJ23
  H. senegalensisJT12 [=Cecropis senegalensisL03]
    |--H. s. senegalensisL03
    `--H. s. monteiri Hartlaub 1862 [incl. H. s. hybrida van Someren 1921]L03
  H. subis Linnaeus 1758L58

Hirundo rustica rustica Linnaeus 1758L03 [incl. H. rustica afghanica Koelz 1939L03, H. rustica var. horreorum Heuglin 1874S05]

*Type species of generic name indicated


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[Scl66] Sclater, P. L. 1866. Report on birds collected at Windvogelberg, South Africa, by Capt. G. E. Bulger, C. M. Z. S. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1866: 21–23.

[U93] Unwin, D. M. 1993. Aves. In: Benton, M. J. (ed.) The Fossil Record 2 pp. 717–737. Chapman & Hall: London.

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