Family Swallows and Martins (Hirundinidae)

Least Concern

Brown-bellied Swallow (Orochelidon murina)


French: Hirondelle à ventre brun German: Mausschwalbe Spanish: Golondrina ventriparda

Petrochelidon murina


, 1853,



Previously placed in Notiochelidon (see Atticora) or sometimes in Atticora, but genetic data#R group present species in separate genus with O. flavipes and O. andecola. Three subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • O. m. meridensis J. T. Zimmer & Phelps, Sr, 1947 – W Venezuela.
  • O. m. murina (Cassin, 1853) – Andes in Colombia, Ecuador and Peru.
  • O. m. cyanodorsalis Carriker, 1935 – S Peru and C Bolivia.
  • Descriptive notes

    14 cm; 12·5 g. Male nominate race has crown and upperparts blackish with blue-green gloss; wings and tail dark brown, tail moderately forked; underparts sooty grey-... read more


    Song is a weak buzzing; also a contact call “tjrip tjirp-tjrip-tjirp”, and an alarm... read more


    Open highland country, such as grassland, shrub, elfin forest, Polylepis woodland,... read more

    Food and feeding

    Feeds on aerial insects. Forages alone, in pairs, or in small groups; sometimes with Pygochelidon cyanoleuca, less often with ... read more


    Nest-building and/or eggs recorded in Sept–Oct in Colombia and Ecuador; also, individuals in breeding condition in Jan–Aug in... read more


    Probably resident; possibly some local or seasonal movements, e.g. in Venezuela.

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened. Common or fairly common. Not well known. Present in several protected areas, e.g. Podocarpus National Park (Ecuador).

    Recommended citation

    Turner, A. (2020). Brown-bellied Swallow (Orochelidon murina). 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 27 February 2020).