Bank Swallow Colonies in Alaska - report your observations

By Alaska eBird May 19, 2022
Bank Swallow Riparia riparia

Bank Swallow populations in North America have declined steeply (89%) since 1970, with even greater losses in Canada (98%).  Recently, a group of biologists from Alaska and Canada are trying to understand drivers of decline during both breeding and non-breeding seasons to inform conservation efforts.  This includes documenting occupancy of colony sites and determining migratory path/wintering areas of Alaska breeders. A common pattern appears to be that smaller colonies may have disappeared in recent decades, but some larger sites remain.

Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologists are creating a Bank Swallow colony register for research and monitoring. Submitting sightings to eBird with the appropriate breeding codes is important, but more precise colony locations (GPS or directions to the colony within a site) will be the most helpful. If you know about active Bank Swallow colony sites, please send an email with the GPS location or directions to the site to Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologists Julie Hagelin ( and Eva Allaby (  

Bank Swallow breeding locations reported to eBird using breeding codes ON (Occupied nest) and UN (Used nest)

Your observations are critical to better understanding the decline of this species. Please participate and make your observations count!