17 August 2015  Brittany, France: On the morning of the 13th August the Swallows were congregating on the electric cable outside our house. This is very early as they usually start mid-September. There were about 100 of them. I haven’t seen them do this since, but our neighbour’s Swallows are still here flying in and out of his barn. There must be 10 or more. The weather has been unsettled this Summer and it now feels like Autumn. It is very cool in the mornings for the time of year. Last Friday afternoon (14th) we had very heavy rain and strong winds. I hope the Swallows aren’t going to leave just yet!
Kind regards, Veronica

15 August 2015 Brittany, Northern France: All our hatchlings are dead. Yesterday I found one on the ground under the nest alive and I popped him back in the nest without looking in the nest. This morning I looked in just in case he had fallen out again and yes he was on the floor, landed on his back and was dead.  I then noticed the parent  swallows were not flying in and out of the boiler room. After an hour or so, I looked in the nest and 3 hatchlings were dead. Early this morning I remember all the parent swallows and family members ( who all suddenly came back last weekend) were making a lot of shrieking noises outside the nest and flying around.

Last week we have had every type of weather. Yesterday morning it rained very heavy.  I saw ALL the swallows resting inside on the clothes line. Last night we hit 9c, very cold for august.  I think the hatchlings were about 2 weeks old.

Incidentally, 6pm on 11th August was the first time the swallows started to congregate on the electric line, there were 23.  Every year for a couple of weeks before migrating, they gather here until the numbers build up.  Last year we had 100 before they left the first weekend of September.
Eleanor

5 August 2015 Brittany, Northern France: Update. The dominant pair took over their old nest in the boiler cupboard, my husband saw them mating on the 15th May, 20th May they were sitting on 5 eggs. 4th May they hatched. One baby got crushed in the nest and I found him dead half emerged from his shell which the parent had dropped out in front of  the nest 3 days later. The 4 fledglings left the nest and after a couple of weeks we did not see them anymore which was not like last year. Last year they stayed together and stayed around to help bring up the second clutch.
Second clutch; 3 eggs laid in a new nest 14th July, hatched 29th July.  We put up homemade nests last winter, none were used. A single swallow used the supports I put up and made a nest, it never found a partner and this one too disappeared with the others.
We have had a very cold July, is that why they left ????  Summer would not be the same without them. Looking forward to September to count the swallows when they congregate on the wires before migrating south.
Eleanor

8 June 2015 Barn Swallows in France:Barn Swallow fledgling June 2015

Barn Swallow rescued after falling from nest ….so here’s little Scruff the Barn Swallow!  He’s had an enormous breakfast (I resorted to tiny bits of raw mince, as the crickets seem to have taken themselves off to a distant part of the field?!), and there’s been much preening and wing flapping again, as well as having a little walk around; now having a doze…2 days later he was fully recovered and fledged and flew away safely.

Best wishes
Ros

21 April 2015 Lannion, North Brittany, France: The first swallow arrived on 12th April about 6pm, made a lot of noise inspecting his old nest. He was alone for 3 days. 15th April 2nd swallow arrived, lots of noise inspecting favourite roost sites in our barn and boiler cupboard. 16th April 3rd swallow arrived. Good weather, lots of mosquitoes and flies.  19th April, 6 swallows are fighting over the nest site, we have made 4 nests this week and put them in the barn to encourage the others to nest there.  A few days later we have settled with just 3 swallows sleeping together on the light cable. Spotted other swallows high in the sky. I am thrilled to have them back with their chatter.  Regards Ella

25 Sept 2014 France: We are here wind surfing in the south of France in a small town called leucate and have noticed that the swallows are traveling north on the same same migration route as they do in spring (we were here in may). This seems a little crazy to us but I thought you may be interested in this observation. Regards Keith

21 June 2014 France: The little ones left the nest definitively on the 17th. They stayed close in the house that day (found a “new nest” in an old tambourine) and ventured out of doors on the 18th all together, all day !​ Here are a few more photos from this week. My very best, Hannah

Barn Swallows in France 2014
Barn Swallows in France 2014
Barn Swallows in France 2014
Barn Swallows in France 2014
Barn Swallows in France 2014

17 June 2014 France: Finally, we got two wonderful photos uploaded… today the first one took flight, and it is a lively, very skillful flier from the start. The first one is the nest in our living room, just above the piano (well covered), and the second is this first to leave the nest, settled on the mantle of the chimney.

Thanks again for your interest in bringing together a community of swallow-lovers from all around !
All my best, Hannah
Barn Swallows in France 2014

Barn Swallows in France | 6 June 2014 France: I’m excited to see your growing list of s​wallow followers. Here, we live in a small town, Joiselle, France (in Champagne). We have barn swallows who have nested inside our house for more than 14 years now, in the living room to be exact ! It is an old farm house, and they have three nests mounted to the beams of the ceiling. One main nest in the middle of the room, where the babies are hatched, then two auxiliary nests closer to the front window of the house where the young ones nest after they leave the main nest.

This year, I first saw the return of three couples on April 19th (Saturday). They were more than one week later than usual this year (normally we see them around the 10th or 11th of April). We now have only three adults that I can see regularly. One couple resides in our main nest (two babies were just born yesterday), but the third bird seems to be a younger rival.
This year has been a very strange year indeed, as there was only one bird here inside for the first 10 days or so. Then the mate was chosen, and the rest has evolved normally, except for this third swallow, who often comes inside and gets stuck/lost, as it is not known territory, and the way out is more difficult to understand than the way in.
Here are a few photos from past years. My kind regards to you, Hannah
Barn Swallows in France
Barn Swallows in France

1 April 2014 France: I was looking online at the end of last week to see if there was any news as to why the swallows were much later arriving here in South-West France than usual. Most years here by the 25th March but in 2013 the first swallow to arrive in my barn was on 10th March!
Sunday last – the 30th March I saw 15 swallows by the river at St Cyprien, Dordogne, France and ‘our’ first swallow arrived yesterday evening with lots of tweeting and chitterling. Best wishes Jan Roberts

12 September 2012 Alsace, France: In spring we got two Pairs of Barn Swallows. Once they arrived they were in nests in the buildings belonging to the apple farm. One pair in the Barn and one pair I the Garage. Just like last year. You borrowed us two pairs = 4 Barn swallows. Now I can tell you, that the 4 swallows have become 24!!!, which we can return to you and say thank you for lending them. I think it has been a very fine year for our Swallows! A week ago there were still young birds in a nest!! It is very late, but I hope soon they can be ready to be on the long journey to you. Med venlig hilsen, Kurt Servé

Barn Swallows in France | 10 September 2012 Dordogne, France: we first saw your site back in March, when we were anxiously awaiting our ‘boys’ (barn Swallows) to arrive at our holiday home in the Dordogne, France. On previous years, they had always arrived between 15th and 19th March. When we left in early April, they had still not arrived, although a few had been seen in the area. We would estimate that numbers were approx 90% down in the region. We returned to the house in June, hopeful that ours had just been late, avoiding the terrible weather, but no. The nests which remain in the house, were empty. We used to love sharing our space with them, and always welcomed their chatter.
Although sad for ourselves, it is now a joy to see large numbers of birds heading South. They have been streaming over the house for the last four days – look out for them, they are coming! Happy sighting. Carole and Les Kirkland

5 April 2011 Barn Swallows in France: by Paula Clements

I live in Eastern France not too far from the Swiss border and every summer I have swallows nesting in my house which is lovely. I open up the door of their room every morning and close it at night, there are also other people in this region who welcome swallows into their homes!
At the moment I just have one swallow sleeping in at night, It is a male, there are other swallows about but I don’t think his mate has arrived yet as he is hanging about on the wires in front of the house, there are other swallows too but he is waiting. The females usually arrive later than the males, so lets hope his particular mate arrived, he’s doing a lot of singing!

6-04-2011

Just a quick update, the female arrived yesterday and spent the night in the romm with her mate!  There are lots of other swallows around! We are experiencing one of the warmest early Springs for several years and I think that the swallows knew. Plenty of flies around  and an added bonus the farmers have let the cows out into the fields nearby after an indoors wintering, my pony and llamas also helping to attract flies!!!!
Barn Swallow nest in unusual place
Barn Swallow nest in unusual place
Barn Swallow nest in unusual place