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Old 2019-03-13, 13:02   #4
tServo's Avatar
May 2009
near the Tannhäuser Gate

22·32·17 Posts
Default Chimney swifts

In the lot just to my south is an old ( 50-80 year ) grade school that has been chopped up into apartments and condos. It's a fairly huge brick structure with several chimneys reaching toward the sky, now rendered obsolete by the installation of modern, efficient heating units.
Also, the top floor, which probably was a storage attic of sorts, is completely abandoned now and has these slats of wood covering the former windows. The chimneys provide nesting sites for the birds; he slatted windows for bats.
Every Spring, a good sized extended family ( say 20-30 ) of chimney swifts arrive and take up residence in the described upper reaches of the grade school. Every Autumn, when the days get short, they leave for their southern vacation. I judge the seasons by them.

They are fascinating to watch flying as they are surely some of the fastest birds I have ever seen. Also, they can change direction on a dime. I see them mainly at dusk when the hoards of night loving insects come out. Their shape, the results of untold millenia of evolution, reminds me of the swept wings of the me-262 or its descendants, the mig-15 and f-86.
The dusk sky is filled with their zooming about as they feed, chirping excitedly.
Thanks to the swifts for keeping the dreaded insect hoard ( which seems to get worse every year ) down.

Last fiddled with by tServo on 2019-03-13 at 13:11
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