Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2006-42

Common name:

Vaux's Swift

Scientific name: Chaetura vauxi
Date: September 17, 2006
Time: 9:00 9:15 am
Length of time observed: 15 minutes
Number: 2-3
Age: Adults
Sex: unknown
Location: SR-9 Hurricane Sewage Ponds
County: Washington
Latilong: 19
Elevation: ~3950
Distance to bird: 10-40 m
Optical equipment: Leica 8x42 binoculars
Weather: Clear, slightly windy
Light Conditions: sunshine
Description:        Size of bird:  
(Description:)       Basic Shape:  
(Description:)  Overall Pattern:  
(Description:)            Bill Type:  
Field Marks and
Identifying Characteristics:
Relatively small swifts with deep, quick wingbeats. Body and wings dark grayish black overall, body torpedo shaped with no apparent neck, tapering towards rear, very short square tail. Underside of body with lighter head and throat gradually darkening towards rear, upperside of body just the opposite with dark head gradually lightening towards tale, palest on rump. Long thin wings, tapering towards wingtip. Very small bill, and dark eye.
(see photos)
Song or call & method of delivery: none heard
Behavior: Ridiculously quick and acrobatic flyers, repeatedly flying back and forth over pond and fairways. Very difficult to photograph these bugs.
Habitat: Urban golf course fairways and pond at edge of St. George
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
Chimney Swift: Eliminated by larger size, darker rump, and flight style (slower wingbeats with more gliding).
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
I've observed Vaux's Swifts a handful of times in Washington Co. and a few times other places.
References consulted:  
Description from: From: Notes taken at time of sighting
Observer: Rick Fridell
Observer's address: 3505 West 290 North, Hurricane, UT 84737
Observer's e-mail address:
Other observers who independently identified this bird:  
Date prepared: 9-26-06
Additional material: Photos
Additional comments: