Sand Martin
Sand Martin
Sand Martin (Juvenile)
Scientific Name 
Riparia riparia
Arabic Name 
خطاف الرمال
Kuwaiti name 
12.0 cm
Least Concern


Very common passage migrant; uncommon summer and winter visitor. This bird is often attracted to water, but it can be seen migrating in large flocks in many parts of Kuwait.
Where in Kuwait 
It is usually found near water. It feeds over wetlands in the Jahra area, open water along the coastline and farmland. It feeds almost exclusively on insects caught in flight, although it also occasionally takes insects and spiders from the ground or from the surface of water. Sand martins may feed alone or in large flocks with other Hirundine species like Barn Swallow.
In the world 
It has an extremely large range with a decreasing population and is one of the most widely distributed swallow species in the world. It breeds across North America, Europe and Asia, as far south as Mexico, North Africa and southern Asia. Most sand martin populations migrate south in winter, with birds from North America travelling to Central America, South America and the West Indies, and those from Europe and Asia travelling to Africa, Arabia and southern Asia.
Local threats 
Pesticides that impact their aerial prey and of course indiscriminate shooting for target practise.