Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Female Tree Swallow inspects a nesting cavity...

This yearling female Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor) was giving a possible nesting cavity the once over. She studied it from every angle. Finally the male flew up to see if she liked it...

A female Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor) checks out a possible nesting cavity....

You can tell this is a female yearling Tree Swallow because of her coloring. Adult male and female Tree Swallows look alike with metallic greenish-blue feathers on the upper parts and white feathers on the lower parts, but one-year old females retain the brownish feathers of youth with just a sprinkle of the metallic blue and green feathers on the back.





Our little female Tree Swallow looks happy with the site, and the male seems pleased too, but just a few branches over another bird was fit to be tied. More photos to come...

I saw this pair of Tree Swallows on the boardwalk at Magee Marsh in Toledo, Ohio on May 7, 2012. She was very thorough in her inspection. After the male flew up, they both sang to each other over and over. It looked like they had found their perfect springtime home... This is part one of a three-part series:

Click here for part 2 (focuses on a territory dispute between two House Wrens and two Tree Swallows).
Click here for part 3 (closeups of a male tree swallow).

17 comments:

Michelle Palmer said...

Pure sweetness! Your posts are always wonderful :)

Janice K said...

Looks like they found their new love nest....but from the squacking nearby, was it really "for sale?"

Gillian Olson said...

Beautiful pictures, wonder if she'll move in?

Banjo52 said...

But what are the terms of the mortgage? Surely she's gonna hire a professional inspector as well? And a lawyer to go over the fine print.

These are cool birds. On the other hand, some barn swallows have been nesting in the eves of an apartment complex around these 'burbs, and they attack the humans as they go in and out.

Marco Alpha said...

Hello Kelly,
This is fantastic!! Great to see these swallows so close. Very nice!!
Here in Holland I see them usually only high in the air.

Many greetings,
Marco

TexWisGirl said...

they're so beautiful.

Gaina said...

Haha, that last photo made me laugh out loud. 'They got the view of the lake! I told you we should have been here earlier!' **Mr Swallow receives a sharp wing slap round the ear**

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Great photos of the tree swallows... I love the colors of the male--but the female is pretty also... They built a pretty nice nest!!!!!

Hugs,
Betsy

KaHolly said...

Your series of pics are exquisite!

Kat Griffin said...

I love the photos. and the story to make them even more enjoyable
Hope you are having a good July...sure has been hot this year. and sorry to hear about your tree and those bad bugs. that was a very interesting post also and I showed it to Mr G. he is always happy to learn new things about nature...the good bad and ugly
KAT-

Carole M. said...

magnificent captures; you were lucky to find their nesting place and get near to it. I only ever see swallows on the wing, or landed on a power line or dead tree over a swamp maybe

Frank said...

Super pics of the loving couple.

Elaine said...

I love this series! So hard to know just what kind of house you're looking for when you're young....

Montanagirl said...

Tree Swallows are just such a cute little bird. Very nice photos, Kelly!

Guy said...

Hi Kelly

We have been surrounded by several different species of swallows at the farm this week, tree, cliff, and barn but I have not managed anything close to the beautiful clear photos you have here.

Regards
Guy

Roy said...

Lovely shots of such a delicate bird Kelly.

Kelly said...

...thank you, everyone for the lovely comments. I love those little white bellies, and I can look forever at their gleaming blue and green metallic feathers. This was an interesting encounter, and I'm so glad I was there to watch it. The boardwalk at Magee Marsh is a great way to get up close with birds. Opportunities to see interesting behavior are everywhere there.