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Swifts and Hummingbirds: Apodiformes - Swifts, Hummingbirds, And People

Animal Life ResourceBirdsSwifts and Hummingbirds: Apodiformes - Physical Characteristics, Geographic Range, Habitat, Diet, Behavior And Reproduction, Swifts, Hummingbirds, And People


For thousands of years, people in Asia have used cave swiftlet nests as the main ingredient for bird's nest soup. There is no known significant relationship between people and tree swifts.

People place hummingbird feeders in their yards because they enjoy watching them fly about and drink flower nectar. The birds pollinate the flowers when they drink the nectar, by transferring flower pollen (male sex cells) from the stamen to the pistil, the organ that bears the seeds. This eventually leads to the production of more flowers.


Migratory swifts and hummingbirds fly great distances, often without stopping until they reach winter homes where there is more food. In the wild, swifts may travel at a speed of more than 100 miles (160 kilometers) per hour. The smaller hummingbirds timed in laboratories flew at speeds ranging from 30 to 53 miles (48 to 85 kilometers) per hour.

Swifts alternate between wing movement and gliding, allowing the wind to assist in moving them along. Hummingbirds can stop in mid-air by flapping their wings up and down, allowing them to hover and feed.

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