The first impression this bird gives is being typically a ‘swallow’ in shape; just look at those long outer tail ‘streamers’! But there is something not quite ‘typical’ about this particular swallow. Firstly, it has a pale throat which looks like it is the same colour as the breast and belly (a warm buff colour). But Swallows have dark red throats. Then, the cheeks and the side of the neck are orange-red. And the feathering at the base of the tail (the undertail coverts) are black, not whitish. All these features should point towards this bird being a Red-rumped Swallow. The only obvious ID feature not showing here is the reddish-orange-buff rump. Red-rumped Swallows are regular but rare spring visitors to the UK.
KEY FEATURES Typical swallow structure Orange-buff underparts and side of head/neck; pale throat Black undertail coverts Long tail streamers