Family Swallows and Martins (Hirundinidae)

Least Concern

Asian House Martin (Delichon dasypus)


French: Hirondelle de Bonaparte German: Kaschmirschwalbe Spanish: Avión asiático

Chelidon dasypus


, 1850,



Sometimes considered conspecific with D. urbicum, but breeding ranges reportedly overlap, e.g. S of L Baikal, although documented evidence absent in Himalayas#R; confirmation needed. DNA data#R reveal deep divergence in populations around Japanese archipelago, suggesting cryptic diversity; study needed. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • D. d. cashmeriense (Gould, 1858) – Himalayas from Pakistan E to SC China; winters N India and SE Asia.
  • D. d. dasypus (Bonaparte, 1850) – SC & SE Russia (Khamar-Daban, Ussuriland, Sakhalin), N Mongolia and Kuril Is S to NE China, Korea and Japan; winters S Japan and mainly SE Asia S to Greater Sundas and Philippines.
  • D. d. nigrimentale (E. J. O. Hartert, 1910) – S & E China and Taiwan; winters SE Asia although some birds resident.
  • Descriptive notes

    12–13 cm; 18 g. Has glossy blue crown and back, white rump and shorter uppertail-coverts; wings and tail blackish brown, tail slightly forked; underparts white with... read more


    Song is a soft twittering; shrill contact call.


    Valleys and gorges in mountainous areas and sea coasts, also human habitations. Mostly above 1500 m... read more

    Food and feeding

    Diet includes small dipteran flies (especially Nematocera and Brachycera, also Syrphidae), bugs (Hemiptera) including homopterans, beetles... read more


    Mar–Oct in N, Apr–Jul in S; may have up to three broods, possibly only one in Himalayas. Colonial, in small groups; nests often... read more


    Largely migratory; extent of winter ranges unclear. NE populations (nominate race) migrate S to,... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Locally common. Extent of range in S Russia uncertain: recent expansion into Khamar-Daban region; any breeding localities between... read more

    Recommended citation

    Turner, A. (2020). Asian House Martin (Delichon dasypus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 26 February 2020).