SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS

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ShovelHead
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SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS

Post by ShovelHead » Mon May 06, 2019 6:01 pm

HI
HAS ANY ONE NOTICED THE LACK OF SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS THIS YEAR normally we have a lot on the telephone lines very few this year
i was also reading in Egypt they have huge nets around watering holes and they have been harvesting by the millions as they return
from there migrating to Europe, als they have been selling them to china as a delicacy very similar to the qualles the sell over here



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SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS

Post by Stella » Wed May 08, 2019 10:30 am

I was thinking the same - heard the first swifts yesterday but although we've been seeing swallows since late March, not as many. On the other hand we have higher than normal numbers of golden orioles this year. Perhaps they're not such a delicacy, yet.
In the light of the UN report on species loss, we are all going to have to stop eating wild things and growing food in such a way that kills off species by the thousands, not to mention just using and consuming less of absolutlely everything. A pretty tough demand for any government to make on it's people and then expect to be re-elected.
Part of our philosphy when we moved here was to switch our buying priorities from want to need, and to repurpose or mend as much as possible. (So I need my bike to last me at least a decade like the last one did!) And I now garden in the most bizarre clothing from the very back of the wardrobe ...
Mountains are for riding up and skiing down!

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SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS

Post by Jamstealer » Wed May 08, 2019 7:56 pm

We have the usual number here; they have a circuit that goes round the back of my wood, across my house and round the church tower.

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SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS

Post by ChrisD » Fri May 10, 2019 8:09 am

I thought there was a flock of swallows near us but as I got closer I could hear them singing Caravan of love and realised they were House Martins.
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SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS

Post by nodrog » Fri May 10, 2019 9:27 pm

About swallows, house martins and swifts ….
My personal observations over the last few years.
In 2013 a pair of swallows built a nest in an outbuilding attached to my house. They returned the following year. In 2016 a second nest appeared, and in 2017 two more appeared in the garage and two under the eves of the house, so in total we had six nesting couples. Last year, only one couple returned, to the outbuilding. The garage nests stayed empty but the the eves nest was taken over by house martins, who had not been there before and by the end of the season there were about 10 nests under the eves all occupied by house martins. So far this year I have only seen swallows but few house martins. Over the last few years I’ve noticed when I have been camping and visiting different villages that swallows and house martins don’t seem to like cohabiting. Villages have tended to be either swallow villages or house martin villages, rarely both.
As for swifts … you never see them on telephone lines, in fact almost never not on the wing (they sleep flying). I say you but I mean I. Last year there were more swifts than I have ever seen before, especially over Niort where I was working. They would perform such incredible high speed acrobatics, and in amazing numbers, veritable clouds of them, but, unlike swallows and house martins, they had left by early august and not mid September. I don’t know if that is normal, because I had never paid so much attention to them before. I would see them every year but I hadn’t consciously noted when they arrived or left.
Last thing, the French use the same word for swallows and house martins, they’re both hirondelles but to be specific the swallow is a hirondelle rustique, and the house martin is a hirondelle de fenetre. (there are also sand martins, of course, hirondelles de rivage). A swift is a martinet. Swift is a much better word …..

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SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS

Post by ChrisD » Fri May 10, 2019 11:44 pm

Stone the crows J, you should write a book on the subject, then perhaps tweet it, no swan upmanship intended.
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Post by Stella » Sat May 11, 2019 9:49 am

Great post, thanks Nodrog.
Mountains are for riding up and skiing down!

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SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS

Post by ShovelHead » Mon May 13, 2019 6:25 am

HI
GOOD INFORMATION I COULD NOT REMEMBER which slept on the wing as you say its a house martin village or a swift village still very few
around here Rochechouart a couple of pairs but not in abundance

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SWALLOWS AND SWIFTS

Post by papasmurf » Mon May 13, 2019 8:43 am

nodrog wrote:
Fri May 10, 2019 9:27 pm

Last thing, the French use the same word for swallows and house martins, they’re both hirondelles but to be specific the swallow is a hirondelle rustique, and the house martin is a hirondelle de fenetre. (there are also sand martins, of course, hirondelles de rivage). A swift is a martinet. Swift is a much better word …..
It is also French slang for testicles because they never touch the ground.

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