Swallow Fields

I thought it was only two weeks since I last posted, but when I checked, I realized it’s been over a month!! That was totally unintentional!

Let’s get right to it! I want to talk about Swallows! I had never seen a Swallow before this spring. They are absolutely mesmerizing birds. They are compact, agile, acrobatic and beautiful!

I’ve been doing a lot of research on the different birds I see and there is a LOT of information about Swallows that just fascinates me! At my local park, we have seen three types of Swallows.

The first to be seen were Tree Swallows:

With metallic blue feathers and white bellies these air acrobats swoop, flutter and soar through the skies above their nest boxes. They seem like social birds, and have the sweetest little chirps and gurgles. They work hard to protect their nest boxes against the House Sparrows that obnoxiously swoop in and steal their homes! They don’t mind you getting closer, but watch out because they will swoop at you if they feel threatened!

The next type of Swallow is the Barn Swallow.

Barn Swallows have that distinct fork the their tail feathers. Unlike the Tree Swallows who nest in boxes, Tree Swallows nest under the bridge. So it was difficult to observe them not flying. But recently I have seen them in different areas, resting on nearby rocks or rails. I really cherish the moments I can see them taking a moment to rest. Although, I really love watching them fly too.

Very recently, I noticed that some Barn Swallows built their nests just outside the bridge, which gave us an opportunity to observe them more.

The third type of Swallow is the Northern Rough-Winged Swallow.

This one is more elusive, as it doesn’t have bright colours and usually blends in with the other Swallow species. They fly around with the others and hang out in the same areas, but I haven’t had an opportunity to really observe these ones more.

Swallows are so beautiful to watch. They really look like they enjoy living life! Although, it’s not all fun and games for these little birds; they are hard workers! Some Swallows will travel as far north as Alaska from as far south as Nicaragua during migration! Some will have two batches of babies during breeding season – not easy to raise two batches in one season! They work together to ward off their predators – one of which is a Sharp-shinned Hawk. Observing the Swallows has taught me a lot of interesting things, too many to write about here.

What bird have you had a chance to observe over the Spring months? What has it taught you?

Thanks for viewing!
-Jasmin

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