One swallow does not make a Summer

so the saying goes.
Well I reckon Summer is upon us as the swallows have been with us for a couple of weeks now and the nest building is about complete.

But before the swallows came the swifts …

It was amazing to watch a dozen or more birds flying and swooping around the house, checking out the north side for the the best place to build a nest. Eventually two pairs made their final choice of site after considering at least four candidates.

Having done some research on the RSPB site I found out that swifts, like swallows, pair for life and nest in the same place year after year. We live in a Victorian school with a very high pitched roof, perfect for these fast-paced birds who are able to drop down into the air before swooping up into full flight. It also allows them to maintain speed in a descending trajectory before allowing a change of direction upwards to slow their flight.

Both adults share the work, gathering any material they can while in flight before cementing it together with saliva. I believe that in my photograph they are exchanging materials and saliva for that purpose.

It is wonderful to watch and a real privilege to enjoy the company of these spectacular birds.

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Thank you for reading.

Stay well. Stay safe. Stay alert to the world around you.

Marilyn X