Fairly distinctive swift found in northwestern South America. Medium-sized with slightly notched tail. Blackish overall with a white throat and white band across the lower belly. Namesake white tips on tail can be difficult to see. Compare with Andean Swift, which has longer, more sickle-shaped wings, a deeper forked tail, and more extensive white on the breast. White-tipped is typically found in small flocks at fairly high elevations, from around 1,300 to 2,700 m (higher than Lesser Swallow-tailed Swift), and often does not associate with other swift species. Occurs over a variety of habitats including forest and drier, more open areas.