Something had to give. Yesterday morning, the five very mature nestlings were crowded on the nest. I checked on them a few hours later and there were only two birds on the nest. I glanced overhead and saw the missing three perched on one of the rafters.
Today, all five were outside, perched on the roof of the boathouse. They took regular flights in the company of the adults and seemed very adept on the wing.
Full credit goes to my neighbour who only complained about the droppings.
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
This nest of Barn Swallows in our neighbour's boathouse is one of few we've seen this year. Several cottagers who perennially host several families have told me that their boathouses are vacant this summer.
This family is almost set to go. There have been three adults attending five, then four young. Here's what they looked like only four days ago.
Because the nest was off to one side of the structure, most droppings fall clear of the boat - undoubtedly a fortuitous choice by the parents.
Friday, July 3, 2009
The fate of the backyard Tree Swallow brood is unknown. Three days ago the parents were relentlessly feeding the noisy chicks, one of which appeared in the doorway, looking like it was close to fledging. The next day, there were no swallows to be seen or heard. I suspect that fledglings might have dropped from the nest on to the well worn path of the local feral cat.