Sexes alike. Glistening steel-blue above; chestnut cap; unmarked, pure white underbody distinctive; two long, wire-like projections (tail-wires) from outer tail feathers diagnostic. Solitary or small parties; almost always seen around water, either perched on overhead wires or hawking insects in graceful, acrobatic flight, swooping and banking; often flies very low, drinking from the surface; roosts in reed beds and other vegetation, often with warblers and wagtails.
open areas, cultivation, habitation, mostly in vicinity of canals, lakes, rivers.
insects captured on wing.
common breeding (summer) visitor to N India, to about 1,800m in the Himalaya; breeds in many other parts of India; widespread over the area, excepting arid zones.
soft twittering note; pleasant song of breeding male.