We have new tenants. When we moved in I noticed a partial damaged nest left by some barn swallow built in a previous years. Even though the barn swallows were very busy on the utility building next door, no one seemed to be bothering with the single empty mud ledge under my eaves. That actually suited me just fine. I don’t like the swoop and dive aggression and the flying poop machines too close.
Today I noticed a couple has moved in. They are busy renovating. Initially my response was to borrow a long ladder and chase the birds out before they had a chance to lay eggs. Before I did that, I decided to read up on the birds. Imagine my stunned surprise to discover the bird is considered “threatened” in Manitoba. I know that endangered species and related lists have become highly political and some species get added, or left off, as it is convenient to government policy. Even so I thought,
“Oh Mother Earth, what is your world coming to if these delightful acrobats of the air are threatened?”
So they can stay. Disturbing them is illegal anyway. This bird eats flying insects on the larger side, not the smaller ones like mosquitoes. We have an ugly local fly, bigger than a housefly, smaller than a horsefly, that bites like the dickens and is called the “bulldog” by the locals. One of the nieghbours had to make the three hour drive into Winnipeg to treat an infection left by a bull dog last week. While I was out observing my new tenants, one of these bulldogs started harassing me, looking for a meal. As I swatted and waved and shooed one of my delightful new tenants swooped down and picked it out of the air.
I like these birds even more now!