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A Fearless Mother Stays with Her Nest.

June 14, 2011

Barn Swallow

I was at yet another park recently- central Ohio has several of them in the Metro Park system, which I’m a big fan of- and I was in an open shelter house at the edge of some restored wetlands.  I was admiring a mural showing wildlife common to the area when I noticed a nest along the wall just above a block glass window:

The nest was made of both mud and grass, and was supported by the window frame as well as stuck to the wall.

Suddenly, I heard some mild notes commenting upon my presence from a nearby metal wire- the nest’s builder had shown up!

This was a Barn Swallow, a species I’d seen before not long ago nesting at a bridge over the Scioto River.  Rusty breast and dark blue back and head along with a very pointed tail easily identify this bird.

She went to her nest.  Notice she has lined it with feathers before laying her eggs within.

She looked directly at me, maternal instinct overriding fear.

She then sat on her nest, keeping her eggs warm.  I left quietly, impressed by her.

Because I feel that in the heavens above
The angels, whispering one to another,
Can find among their burning terms of love,
None so devotional as that of “Mother”
~ Edgar Allen Poe

12 Comments leave one →
  1. June 14, 2011 3:12 pm

    What a beautiful nest, I can’t imagine how hard it would be to it build it.

  2. June 14, 2011 3:46 pm

    Oh how I wish I could have been there to see this gift of nature too! I could scream! Great captures and the poem just the icing on the cake…or should I say nest!

  3. June 14, 2011 3:53 pm

    They are such beautiful birds, aren’t they? Lovely colours in your photos and great to be able to see the feather lining of the nest. We have barn swallows that return to nest under our porch every year, and watching the family grow is our entertainment!

  4. June 14, 2011 4:19 pm

    Beautiful…without looking it up…I think the Eastern Bluebird is in the swallow family…and they, of course, have wonderful color too…we have a bluebird house in our courtyard…it is a small courtyard, but they seem to like it…in the three years we have been here and have had a bluebird house…being cavity dwellers, they have built a nest every year and laid eggs…twice each year…but only last year were they successful…two batches of 5 went out into the world…but the other times, predators got the eggs or babies, we really don’t know…such is the real world I guess…this year…they lost them too…maybe the next batch…

    Thanks for the glimpse into the swallow world…great pictures and narrative…

  5. onesweetiepea permalink
    June 14, 2011 5:33 pm

    What a gorgeous looking bird she is. 🙂

  6. June 14, 2011 7:49 pm

    Very beautiful pictures indeed. You bring photography to a new level. 🙂

  7. June 14, 2011 8:03 pm

    Beautiful photographs and documentation of the Barn Swallow that made the nest.
    Thank you for leaving a comment on Morning with the Duck Family.

  8. fotosvanwendy permalink
    June 15, 2011 1:00 am

    Thanks again for your comment on my first photo! It is really nice to have a first visitor 🙂
    Ofcourse I decided to take a look around on your blog as well.. and I have to say: it’s amazing!
    Those birds are simply gorgeous! And furthermore you take wonderfull photographs of all those beautiful things in nature. I lóve the deer!

  9. June 15, 2011 1:42 am

    That was an interesting encounter! I enjoyed seeing the photos. We have several swallows in residence here too.

  10. June 15, 2011 12:27 pm

    Interesting pictures, I can see how you would stop to admire the mural. Barn swallows are a positive and negative on my parent’s farm. Positive .. they eat a ton of bugs, not shy of people, and are pretty to have around. Negative … the mud nests and swallow population gets out of control … every spring they would try to make new nests (all over the house was the worst) and the old ones would fall down (plus all the poop) and make a mess on the machinery in the barns. Just a case of too much of a good thing.

  11. June 15, 2011 5:02 pm

    Hi..Thanks for the comments on my post..Love your Barn Swallow mother..and the poetry at the end..Poe is an old favorite..I don’t know if you are on Twitter, but I am posting your blog there..

  12. June 16, 2011 4:07 am

    Birds are so grand. They are wonderful and very protective Mothers. i love watching them. I like your Edgar Allen Poe quote. It’s very fitting. 🙂

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