The Purple Martin is the largest swallow in North America and one of the largest in the world. Adult males are a solid, glossy, purplish-blue both above and below. Females are colored similarly but less brightly above and have gray napes and foreheads. Below, females have brownish-gray breasts and light gray bellies. Juveniles look much like females, but are streaked underneath. The tails of Purple Martins are slightly forked. In flight, European Starlings can be confused with Purple Martins, but the narrower wings, forked tails, and typical swallow flight of martins distinguish the two. The only other swallow in Washington with a dark chest and light belly like the female Purple Martin is the Cliff Swallow, but the Cliff Swallow is much smaller and has a square tail and more rounded wings.

First Sighting of Year

Monday, March 30, 2015 1333 Main St Columbia SC United States
Sunday, May 22, 2016 College Park MD United States
Friday, April 14, 2017 950 Surfside Port Bolivar TX United States
Sunday, May 6, 2018 111€“127 Island Dr Newbury MA United States
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