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Spot-fronted Swift Cypseloides cherriei
BirdLife is updating this factsheet for the 2016 Red List
Please email us with any relevant information

This species is known only from a few specimen and sight records, and there is no information on the true extent of its distribution, population size or trends. The challenges inherent in identification of neotropical swifts mean that even sight records by experienced observers should be treated with caution. Until further information is available on the species' status, it is classified as Data Deficient.

Taxonomic source(s)
del Hoyo, J.; Collar, N. J.; Christie, D. A.; Elliott, A.; Fishpool, L. D. C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International.
SACC. 2006. A classification of the bird species of South America. Available at: #

Distribution and population
Cypseloides cherriei has been recorded from the Pacific slope of the Cordillera Central and Cordillera de Talamanca in Costa Rica, Cordillera de la Costa in Aragua, Venezuela, three sites in Santander, Cauca and Boyacá (Chávez-Portilla et al. 2007), Colombia, and two sites in west Pichincha and Napo (Christmas Bird Count unpublished data), Ecuador. Breeding has only been proven at single sites in Costa Rica and Venezuela and two sites in Ecuador (Greeney 2004), where birds are presumed to be resident. It is almost certainly under-recorded, and its status and distribution in areas between the widely spaced known localities should be investigated (Stiles and Skutch 1989).

Population justification
The global population size has not been quantified, but this species is described as 'rare' (Stotz et al. 1996).

Trend justification
The population is suspected to be stable in the absence of evidence for any declines or substantial threats.

Most records are from montane regions, near streams in forested and open habitats, at 1,000-2,200 m (Collins 1980, del Hoyo et al. 1999). It nests and roosts in permanently humid areas (e.g. behind waterfalls) in rocky gorges of mountain streams and roosts in similar habitats (Collins 1980, Stiles and Skutch 1989, Marín and Stiles 1993).

Unknown, but most of its habitat is likely to be relatively intact.

Conservation Actions Underway
The species is known to have bred at Rancho Grande in the Henri Pittier National Park in Venezuela (Collins 1980) and at Cabañas San Isidro and the Yanayacu Biological Station in eastern Ecuador (Greeney 2004). Conservation Actions Proposed
Study its ecological requirements and threats. Survey further potentially suitable sites between known localities. Investigate nesting habits and potential competition for nesting sites with Streptoprocne rutila, as the two species are known to use the same nesting sites, but at different times of the year in eastern Ecuador (Greeney 2004, H. F. Greeney in litt. 2012).

Chantler, P.; Driessens, G. 1995. Swifts: a guide to the swifts and treeswifts of the world. Pica Press, Robertsbridge, U.K.

Chvez-Portilla, G. A.; Hernndez-Jaramillo, A.; Cortes-Herrera, J. O.; Villagran-Chavarro, D. X.; Drigelio-Gil, J.; Alarcón-Bernal, S. M.; Rodriquez, N.; Gamba-Trimio, C. 2007. Tercer registro del Vencejo Frente Blanca (Cypseloides cherriei, Apodidae) para Colombia. Boletín de la Sociedad Antioquea de Ornitología 17 : 47-49.

Collins, C. T. 1980. The biology of the Spot-fronted Swift in Venezuela. American Birds 34: 852-855.

del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Sargatal, J. 1999. Handbook of the Birds of the World, vol. 5: Barn-owls to Hummingbirds. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona, Spain.

Greeney, H. F. 2004. A nest of the Spot-fronted Swift Cypseloides cherriei in eastern Ecuador. Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club 124: 154-156.

Marín, A. M.; Stiles, F. G. 1993. Notes on the biology of the Spot-fronted Swift. Condor 95: 479-483.

Sibley, C. G.; Monroe, B. L. 1990. Distribution and taxonomy of birds of the world. Yale University Press, New Haven, USA.

Stiles, F.G. and Skutch, A.F. 1989. A Guide to the Birds of Costa Rica. Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY.

Stotz, D. F.; Fitzpatrick, J. W.; Parker, T. A.; Moskovits, D. K. 1996. Neotropical birds: ecology and conservation. University of Chicago Press, Chicago.

Further web sources of information
Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

Search for photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Capper, D., Clay, R., Isherwood, I., Sharpe, C J, Symes, A.

King, J., Greeney, H., Collins, C.

IUCN Red List evaluators
Butchart, S., Symes, A.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Cypseloides cherriei. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Data Deficient
Family Apodidae (Swifts)
Species name author Ridgway, 1893
Population size Unknown mature individuals
Population trend Stable
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 3,500 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species