When I first started bird watching, I treated all birds the same. My earlier blog posts would reveal this, I'm ashamed to admit. Back then, it didn't matter if they were Golden-crowned Sparrows, Downy Woodpeckers, Northern Flickers, or House Sparrows...I loved them all the same.
Well, things have changed.
After spending time out at the George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary on Westham Island, I've watched as Tree Swallows were evicted from Nesting Boxes by aggressive invasive species...left, right, and center. The invasive species I refer to are House Sparrows...the most widely distributed wild bird of all. For more information on the House Sparrow, visit The Cornell Lab of Ornithology "All About Birds"
Here are a series of photographs I took, shortly after a Tree Swallow left her nesting box in search of food....
After a short while, the Tree Swallows returned. They tried, in vain, to chase away the House Sparrows. All they could do is sit in a nearby tree, devising their next plan of attack...
Tree Swallows are forced to be vigilant. Often, one of a pair would remain at the nesting box, while the other left in search of food. Once one returned, the other would depart.
Which would you prefer to see nesting?
6 hours ago