There were about 100 swallows, roughly evenly split between Barn and Tree, massing in the parking lot at Robert Moses Field 2 yesterday morning. Periodically, they rose up in an old-fashioned cloud, and then set down quickly. They were joined by a couple of juv. R. W. Blackbirds, which looked quite anomalous.
Bob Grover d +1 (631) 761-7369 | c +1 (516) 318-8536 -----Original Message----- From: bounce-122741111-3714...@list.cornell.edu <bounce-122741111-3714...@list.cornell.edu> On Behalf Of Shaibal Mitra Sent: Monday, August 06, 2018 6:10 PM To: NYSBIRDS (NYSBIRDS-L@cornell.edu) <NYSBIRDS-L@cornell.edu> Subject: Re:[nysbirds-l] on the subject of Barn Swallows Dear Orhan and all, Yes, Barn Swallows are migrating now. Under the right conditions (northwest winds following a cold front), one can see thousands of them streaming westward along Long Island's outer beaches at this time of year. The weather lately, however, has been quite odd, with no northwest winds in our area since 18 July. The day before that day I posted to this list, describing the potential for a big swallow flight: http://birding.aba.org/message.php?mesid=1452337&MLID=NY01&MLNM=New%20York The flight on the 18th was lighter than I'd hoped, but still illustrative of the potential to see lots of Bank and Barn Swallows on the move: https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S47273411 During the relentlessly dull, humid weather since then, it's likely that Barn Swallows and other species are continuing to migrate, but in less dramatic and conspicuous ways. Yesterday, as a group of us held an unsuccessful vigil for the Walkill River Roseate Spoonbill in Orange County, we noticed interesting Barn Swallow behavior. The swallows foraged higher and higher during the late morning, until, during the middle of that sweltering day, few could be seen. Toward dusk, about 200 reappeared and began coursing in dense groups, low over the marshes, joined by several Least Bitterns that flew along with them in various directions, attracting their ire at times. Watching this was a visually unusual experience, to say the least! My guess is that the birds gathering around your boats are staging up prior to leaving, or pausing in a favorable feeding area, awaiting favorable conditions to continue migrating. For what it's worth, I have seen exactly the same kind of behavior that you describe, at this time of year. On 29 July 2011, Pat and I met John Zarudsky at Pt. Lookout, Nassau County, to survey the Line Islands for shorebirds. On his boat and others in the West Marina, I estimated 60 Barn Swallows, closely packed on the railings. Shai Mitra Bay Shore I saw 35 Barn Swallows on an 18' boat in West Neck Creek, Shelter Island while trolling for Snapper Blues. I saw many more on other boats . I have been trolling around boats for ten years here, never seen this many Barn Swallow on boats. Barn swallows here nest under docks and many times the high tide wipes them out, there is at least a hundred docks from the beginning to the end of West Neck Creek. Maybe the start of migration south? I must also add that I see hundreds of Tree Swallow moving west starting at this time of the year over the creeks, this year maybe 10% of the Barn Swallows. At least in my Purple Martin colony where I have a Tree Swallow gourd away, I found only one or two survive out of four or five, where I never had casualties and in Mashomack many were found dead in the Blue Bird houses, because of the many Noreasters.this spring. Maybe, better live Barn Swallows than Tree Swallows OrhanShelter Island -- NYSbirds-L List Info: http://www.NortheastBirding.com/NYSbirdsWELCOME.htm http://www.NortheastBirding.com/NYSbirdsRULES.htm http://www.NortheastBirding.com/NYSbirdsSubscribeConfigurationLeave.htm ARCHIVES: 1) http://email@example.com/maillist.html 2) http://www.surfbirds.com/birdingmail/Group/NYSBirds-L 3) http://birding.aba.org/maillist/NY01 Please submit your observations to eBird: http://ebird.org/content/ebird/ -- This communication and any attachments are intended only for the use of the individual or entity named as the addressee. It may contain information which is privileged and/or confidential under applicable law. If you are not the intended recipient or such recipient's employee or agent, you are hereby notified that any dissemination, copy or disclosure of this communication is strictly prohibited and to notify the sender immediately. -- NYSbirds-L List Info: http://www.NortheastBirding.com/NYSbirdsWELCOME.htm http://www.NortheastBirding.com/NYSbirdsRULES.htm http://www.NortheastBirding.com/NYSbirdsSubscribeConfigurationLeave.htm ARCHIVES: 1) http://firstname.lastname@example.org/maillist.html 2) http://www.surfbirds.com/birdingmail/Group/NYSBirds-L 3) http://birding.aba.org/maillist/NY01 Please submit your observations to eBird: http://ebird.org/content/ebird/ --