Blue Swallows II
I happened to be outside gardening when I was distracted from the sounds and site of five Blue Swallows chasing one Blue Swallow. All swarming above one bird house. I’ve never heard these sounds of threat come from these birds before. Their flight pattern toward one specific male Blue Swallow was direct and aggressive. This one bird was carrying a hawk or Barred owl feather with him as he flew offensively with one goal in mind… to enter the birdhouse.
I was able to catch part of the drama.
What is the big deal with the feather? Why is this bird battling to keep it and use it to “shape” his nest? Does anyone know what the value of the feather for completing the nest? Is a predator’s feather sacred for raising a family?
I have taken several shots of the Blue Swallow trying to place this feather in the birdhouse’s small enterance. Not only once did this bird try to maneuver the feather through the small entrance way, but over six attempts until he finally gave up. Once the Blue Swallow left and I knew the coast was clear, I decided to open the birdhouse up to see what the big deal was. To my surprise there were about a half dozen other feathers perfectly placed in the nest.
Here is the captured event.
Spring is here and the last couple of weeks the birds have been out and about rounding up pine needles, twigs, grass clippings, moss, and dog hair from my land to build their annual nests. Robins, Chickadees, and Blue Swallows are the majority of the birds taking flight in my yard. This time of year, every morning I’m greeted with an array of songs from a variety of North Eastern birds. For me, it’s the best way to wake up in the morning. I will even crack open the window to amplify the “music”, lie back down, close my eyes, and listen to the songs of the wild, while I reassure my dogs they will be fed breakfast. For a few more minutes, I’m able to take in the sweet sounds of the birds before the morning bustle.
For the eight years I’ve lived at this house, Blue Swallows have returned to nest in the six weathered birdhouses that are strewed among the back fields. Not only do the Blue Swallows return, so do the Hawks. Unfortunately, Hawks will swoop down out of nowhere and prey on Blue Swallows in mid-flight. I have witness the survival and defeat every year – the circle of life. So far, I think only one has been assassinated. I will know more on what the actual count is tomorrow when the Blue Swallows take their morning flight.