Friday, 26 August 2011

Our Summer Visitors

Birds on the wire - Swallows and Martins this morning

Birds on the wire yesterday morning
 You can see the difference in the number of birds between yesterday and today; as the summer draws on more and more Swallows and House Martins gather on the telephone wires.  This morning the sky is full of them twittering and gathering into large flocks.

When I looked out of the window at 6.30 a.m. there wasn't a single one to be seen - then I heard them heading in from the east, they have possibly been roosting down at the reservoir - they came in one big mass, you could hear them before you saw them.  They sit on the wires preening, vying for position and having a good natter to their neighbours.

They have been my constant companions in the garden all summer, performing their aerial feats above my head, chattering all the while.  The martins build their nests in the eaves of the houses down the street, and come back every year to the same nests, making repairs with mud collected from the puddles.  They dip and swoop across each others path without missing a wing-beat.

They appear magically in spring after their hazardous journey across continents and oceans and raise their young, who, in a very short time, are able to dash through the air with the swiftness of a meteor, catching insects and generally enjoying themselves showing off with their aerial acrobatics.

Soon they will gather on the wires for the last time, before making their epic journey back to Africa for the winter.  I will miss my little flighty friends, the countryside will be quieter without them, but hopefully, we will see them once again next year.


  1. That's what I'll be seeing in about a month also preparing for their trip to the South.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  2. I always worry for them making that long journey, so much can happen along the way.

  3. Lucky you seeing these as I never see them hereabouts! Flighty xx

  4. What a shame you don't have any in your area, they are a joy (except for the bird-poo on the windowsills).

  5. What fun it must've been all summer having these garden companions around you!