Great dusky swifts Cypseloides senex, photographed by Tom Stephenson.

Belongs within: Apodiformes.
Contains: Chaeturinae, Apodinae.

The Apodi include the swifts, aerial insectivores with long narrow wings. Swifts are divided between the true swifts of the Apodidae and the tree swifts of the Hemiprocnidae. The tree swifts have softer plumage than the true swifts, and males are brighter in colouration. They also build flimsy platform nests on top of tree branches, while true swifts glue cup-shaped nests against vertical surfaces such as cliff faces or tree trunks (Austin 1961).

Synapomorphies (from Mayr 2003a): Extremitas omalis of furcula with long and slender processus acromialis and distinct laterally protruding facies articularis acrocoracoidea; humerus with tuberculum supracondylare ventrale elongated and narrow; maximum length of ulna less than 12× width at midsection; distal end of radius with marked tubercle on ventral side of shaft, opposite to tuberculum carpale of ulna; distal part of caudal margin of phalanx proximalis digiti majoris with sulcus for tendon of M. interosseus ventralis; tarsometatarsus with deep sulcus on dorsal surface, proximal to foramen vasculare distale; salivary glands greatly enlarged, saliva used in nest construction; outermost primaries at least 25× length of longest secondaries.

<==Apodi [Macropterygidae]
    |--Hemiprocnidae [Hemiprocni] MPA77
    |    |--Cypselavus Gaillard 1908 Ma03b
    |    |    `--*C. gallicus Gaillard 1908 M02
    |    `--Hemiprocne Nitzsch 1829 P08 (see below for synonymy)
    |         |  i. s.: H. coronata JT12
    |         |--H. comata JT12
    |         `--+--H. longipennis JT12
    |            |    |--H. l. longipennis H03
    |            |    `--H. l. thoa H03
    |            `--H. mystacea JT12 [=Dendrochelidon mystacea B49]
    `--Apodidae [Cypselidae, Micropodidae] MPA77
         |  i. s.: Tachornis SWK87
         |           |--T. furcata JT12
         |           |--T. phoenicobia MPA77
         |           |--T. squamata JT12
         |           `--T. uranoceles SWK87
         |         Aerodramus Mo03
         |           |--A. spodiopygius Mo03
         |           |    |--A. s. spodiopygius Mo03
         |           |    |--A. s. chillagoensis Mo03
         |           |    `--A. s. terraereginae Mo03
         |           `--A. vanikorensis FR98
         |                |--A. v. vanikorensis FR98
         |                `--A. v. bartschi FR98
         |         Procypseloides Harrison 1984 M02
         |           `--*P. ignotus (Milne-Edwards 1871) (see below for synonymy) M02
         |         Schoutedenapus JT12
         |           |--S. myoptilus MPA77
         |           `--S. schoutedeni JT12
         |         Nephoecetes niger MPA77
         |         Telacanthura JT12
         |           |--T. melanopygia JT12
         |           `--T. ussheri MPA77
         |         Reinarda squamata GZ98
         |--Scaniacypselus Harrison 1984 Ma03a
         |    |--*S. wardi Harrison 1984 Ma03b
         |    `--S. szarskii (Peters 1985) Ma03b [=Aegialornis szarskii M02, Primapus szarskii M02]
         `--+--+--Chaeturinae Ma03b
            |  `--+--Apodinae Ma03b
            |     `--Hirundapus JT12
            |          |--H. caudacutus (Latham 1801) R85
            |          |--H. celebensis JT12
            |          |--H. cochinchinensis VP89
            |          `--H. giganteus JT12
            `--Streptoprocne JT12
                 |  i. s.: S. biscutata JT12
                 |         S. semicollaris MPA77
                 |--S. rutila JT12
                 `--+--S. phelpsi JT12
                    `--+--S. zonaris JT12
                       `--Cypseloides Streubel 1848 Ma03b, B94 [Cypseloidinae]
                            |--C. cherriei JT12
                            |--C. cryptus JT12
                            |--C. fumigatus MPA77
                            |--C. lemosi JT12
                            |--C. niger SWK87
                            |--C. rothschildi JT12
                            |--C. rutilus MPA77
                            |--C. senex JT12
                            `--C. storeri JT12

Hemiprocne Nitzsch 1829 P08 [incl. Dendrochelidon Boie 1832 B94, Macropteryx Swainson 1832 P08; Dendrochelidonidae]

*Procypseloides ignotus (Milne-Edwards 1871) [=Cypselus ignotus, Apus ignotus, Cypseloides ignotus; incl. Collocalia incerta Milne-Edwards 1871, Cypselavus intermedius Gaillard 1939] M02

*Type species of generic name indicated


Austin, O. L., Jr. 1961. Birds of the World: A survey of the twenty-seven orders and one hundred and fifty-five families. Paul Hamlyn: London.

[B49] Baker, E. W. 1949. A review of the mites of the family Cheyletidae in the United States National Museum. Proceedings of the United States National Museum 99 (3238): 267-320.

[B94] Bock, W. J. 1994. History and nomenclature of avian family-group names. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 222: 1-281.

[FR98] Fritts, T. H., & G. H. Rodda. 1998. The role of introduced species in the degradation of island ecosystems: a case history of Guam. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 29: 113-140.

[GZ98] Gerwin, J. A. & R. M. Zink. 1998. Phylogenetic patterns in the Trochilidae. Auk 115 (1): 105-118.

[H03] Heads, M. 2003. Ericaceae in Malesia: Vicariance biogeography, terrane tectonics and ecology. Telopea 10 (1): 311-449.

[JT12] Jetz, W., G. H. Thomas, J. B. Joy, K. Hartmann & A. Ø. Mooers. 2012. The global diversity of birds in space and time. Nature 491: 444-448.

[Ma03a] Mayr, G. 2003a. Phylogeny of early Tertiary swifts and hummingbirds (Aves: Apodiformes). Auk 120 (1): 145-151.

[Ma03b] Mayr, G. 2003b. A new Eocene swift-like bird with a peculiar feathering. Ibis 145: 382-391.

[M02] Mlíkovský, J. 2002. Cenozoic Birds of the World. Part 1: Europe. Ninox Press: Praha.

[Mo03] Morcombe, M. 2003. Field Guide to Australian Birds, 2nd ed. Steve Parish Publishing.

[MPA77] Moss, W. W., P. C. Peterson & W. T. Atyeo. 1977. A multivariate assessment of phenetic relationships within the feather mite family Eustathiidae (Acari). Systematic Zoology 26 (4): 386-409.

[P08] Paclt, J. 2008. On the triple usage of the family name Apodidae in zoology (Aves; Crustacea; Insecta). Senckenbergiana Biologica 88 (1): 49-52.

[R85] Robertson, C. J. R. (ed.) 1985. Reader’s Digest Complete Book of New Zealand Birds. Reader’s Digest: Sydney.

[SWK87] Snyder, N. F. R., J. W. Wiley & C. B. Kepler. 1987. The Parrots of Luquillo: Natural history and conservation of the Puerto Rican parrot. Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology: Los Angeles.

[VP89] Viney, C., & K. Phillipps. 1989. Birds of Hong Kong 5th ed. Government Printer: Hong Kong.

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