Lowe’s swiftlet (bird nest)

Type Specimens


If Willoughby P Lowe described the nest of Lowe’s swiftlet 66/1928/1 and /2 might be type specimens. Further research is required. The fragments were collected in the caves of Palawan on the Philippine Islands. Swiftlet roost and nest in dark caves. They differ from other swift because they use echolocation to navigate. Their nests are made exclusively from saliva (spit) which hardens in the air. Bird’s nest soup is a Chinese and Indonesian dish some consider to be a delicacy. Prices reach $6,600 for a kilogram of these nests. As a result numbers of swiftlet are in sharp decline.

This object is on display at RAMM in Gallery 21.

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