April 12, 2008 [LINK / comment]

Swallows arrive en masse

It seemed to me that swallows were slow to return north this spring, but they are here at last. On the drive leading to the Frontier Culture Museum this morning, I saw dozens of Tree swallows fighting to claim nest boxes intended for Blue birds. I saw my first Northern rough-winged swallow of the season at Gypsy Hill park on Thursday afternoon, along with a Flicker and a pair of Pileated woodpeckers at nest holes. On Friday afternoon I saw my my first Barn swallow at Bell's Lane, where large numbers of Red-winged blackbirds and Meadowlarks were singing in fields and meadows.

Tree Swallow

Tree swallow, near the Frontier Culture Museum.

Near the top of Betsy Bell Hill this morning, I saw a Hermit thrush for the first time in several weeks. They'll be heading north pretty soon. I also saw two male Yellow-rumped warblers, now in their bright breeding plumage.