The Northern Rough-winged SwallowStelgidopteryx serripennis, is a small swallow.
Adults are 5.1–5.9 inches in length, brown on top with light underparts and a forked tail. They are similar in appearance to the Bank Swallow but have a dusky throat and breast. They are closely related and very similar to the Southern Rough-winged Swallow, Stelgidopteryx ruficollis, but that species has a more contrasting rump, and the ranges do not quite overlap.
Their breeding habitat is near streams, lakes and river banks across North America. They nest in cavities near water, usually a burrow in dirt; they do not usually form colonies. The normal clutch is 4–8 eggs, incubated by the female for 13 days, with another 20 to fledging.
They migrate to the Gulf coast of the United States and south to Central America. These birds forage in flight over water or fields, usually flying low. They eat insects.
"Rough-winged" refers to the serrated edge feathers on the wing of this bird; this feature would only be apparent when holding this bird.
This photo was taken at the Metzger Marsh Wildlife Area, Ohio.