[Tweeters] A violet green swallow communication story

Rob Sandelin floriferous at msn.com
Thu Mar 23 13:13:49 PST 2006

Several years ago I placed a swallow box on a south facing side of the front
of my house. I waited and no swallows would go into the box, although more
than a few would fly around it. One morning while sitting in a chair in the
garden a pair of VG Swallows perched on the porch roof and began chattering
to each other. Then, one of them flew down and cirlced around me about 3
times at seated eye level, chattering the whole time, it then flew and
hovered in front of the box, chattering, then flew and hovered on a
northeast facing alcove about three feet away. It then landed back next to
its partner and I swear they both leaned forward as if to look at me. The
seated one, which I presumed to be the female, began chattering at the
other, as if to say....I don't think the dumb monkey figured it out, do it
again....The flying bird then repeated the whole entire performance. At
that point I went...ohhhh, got the ladder, took down the unused box, and
moved it right to the NE location that the bird indicated. I was halfway
down the ladder when one of the birds flew into the box with nesting
material. As I got to the bottom of the ladder, the other swallow flew a
couple circles around me, only instead of the constant chatter is was only a
couple of chirps, I think it was saying, good monkey. They have nested
there ever since. I later figured out that the location I originally picked
was in full sun and much too hot.

Rob Sandelin
Naturalist, Writer
The Environmental Science School


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