Tree Swallow

General description.

The Tree Swallow is the first swallow to reappear in the Spring. They are playful creatures, sometimes seen dropping and retreaving feathers as they fly along. Like their fellow swallows, they are identified by their forked tails as they sit, erect, in rows along utility wires. Most of the time, however, they are constantly cruising for insects with the aid of long, pointed wings cut for speed and easy maneuvering.

Juvenile appearance.

The young Tree Sparrow is a dull brown but with the same bright underparts.

Flight pattern.

Swooping, with the ability to skim the surface of the water.

Breeding habits.

The Tree Swallow breeds near lakeshore, flooded meadow, marsh and stream.

Calls or song.

A series of twitters.

Population and distribution.

Alaska and Manitoba to Newfoundland and south to California, Colorado, Nebraska and Maryland. Because some of its diet consists of bayberry, the Tree Swallow can winter further north than its cousins; South Carolina being its most southernly destination. Yet again, some remain in their summer habitat among the Snow Bunting, gleaning seeds from weeds through the snow.

Nesting habits.

Tree Swallows will nest just about anywhere. They lay 4-6 white eggs in a feather lined cup inside a hole of a tree, but they will also use man made nesting boxes.
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