March 2019

18 March 2019 – Machida, Tokyo, Japan – 3 Barn Swallows heading NE. 11am 18th March 2019.
Loyd Berry

11 March 2019 – West Palm Beach, USA – Just back from visiting friends in West Palm Beach, Florida, went out of the house one morning last week to be greeted by a small & noisy flock of swallows making the most of the flies & bugs about the pool, our friends were thrilled as they were the first sighting since their American swallows left to go South for the Winter last Autumn.
Cathy Cooper

5 March 2019 – I live in a village known as Walmer Bridge in Lancashire, UK. – Our house is approx. 200 mtrs from my childhood home where as a small child we had a number of swallows nest in our assortment of cabins and stables. it was my desire when I married and moved to our present home to have swallows nest there too. With this in mind I situated a number of cabins, this was around 30 yrs ago. Not a single pair of swallows has ever looked at nesting in any of the cabins !

However, in July 2015 (which is late in the season) a pair arrived, presumably having been made ‘homeless’ elsewhere. They flitted from the dogs cabin and our very modern sectional garage trying to make up their minds which offered the best building site. they chose the garage ! That first season they raised a brood of four and left in mid
September. We waited anxiously to see if they would return the following year. They did ! Both birds arrived together 1st May 2016.

They had two broods of four, all successfully fledged, leaving at intervals in September. In 2017 both birds again arrived together at 0830, 24th April. Five eggs were laid and the young reared almost to fledging, when we had a terrible spell of cold, wet, windy weather. There were no insects to be had, and all young died in the nest ! I removed the dead young. Soon after, the adults laid again another 5 eggs, all hatched and fledged !

2018 saw the male arrive 19th April, however it was not until 5th May that the hen bird arrived (or maybe this was a new partner the cock had
wooed) All that time he was roosting in the garage and during the day spending much of his time perched on the aerial singing his heart out!!! They laid four eggs, three hatched and fledged. The second brood again saw four eggs and only three hatch to almost fledge, then quite suddenly all three disappeared from the garage. there was sign of distress and disturbance. We think maybe a sparrowhawk had entered the garage and predated the three young. The adults remained with us, leaving separately August / September.

We now await a return within the next few weeks.
I have just been in Limpopo Provence for two weeks and it was enchanting to see swallows around and think that they may be ‘ours’ on the way ‘home’!!!
I shall keep you posted !!
Kind Regards,
Greg Roskell.

February 2019

26 February 2019 – Mount Moreland – Temperatures soared to 40°C today, I have never experienced heat like this ever. Angie Wilken

25 February 2019 – Naturalists concerned for early-emerging spring species in UK – This is all to do with our unseasonably warm weather we have at the moment, but as you can see Swallows have arrived in the West Country already.  https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/feb/22/naturalists-concerned-for-early-emerging-spring-species-in-uk?CMP=share_btn_link
Cheers Mac

19 February 2019 – Spain – Your baby’s are arriving.  As always, since I moved into this house in the mountains of southern Spain, promptly on St Valentine’s Day 14th February, the first swallow arrives.  Sometimes he is alone and sometimes a pair arrive.  I think I am right is thinking it is a he as he sings non stop for the first hour of arriving.  Later I think I never  hear that excitement in his voice of the joy in seeing his home is still there.

Over the years we have added little luxuries, like perches between the wooden beams they build their nests on, so they can sit close to their lady when proclaiming their ownership of the area.

For several years now they have had a problem with the nests falling down and this year I have realized why.  We have had an increase in the small rivers close by flooding.  Now instead of the river bed and the banks being muddy they are mostly sand.

A few of the more intelligent birds who live inside our house, overcome the problem by building their nest on top of some square spot lights we have.    Those birds who live outside do not have that facility so this year we have put a number small wooden platforms for them to build on.  I am so pleased to say that it has met with approval, because the first 3 swallows to arrive have chosen to sit on the perches closest to the platforms to sing.

Best Wishes Pauline

9 February 2019Barn swallow season NOW CLOSED 9 February 2019 – Due to very low numbers and no roosting – Please revisit in November 2019

2 February 2018 – See the bird song on a cold day – forwarded by Hilary Vickers
see the song1

6 February 2019 – Denmark – Photo Svend Jørgensen
Barn Swallows Denmark 2018

January 2019

5 January 2019 – Richards Bay, South Africa – I have a home on the Mzingazi Golf Estate. Richards Bay.There seems to be a new arrival of barn swallows nesting in reeds on edge of the weer. Never have we witnessed them before this season.Oh what a sight each evening.I have observed them at Mt Moreland many times.Maybe could this be a new migration site?
Lesley Gove

1 January 2019
New Year 2019