I’d been seeing the Barn Swallows in Cesar Chavez Park for years, but never scored a photograph. They’re perpetually in motion, catching bugs in flight. It’s a hard way to make a living and these birds probably deserve a medal for mosquito abatement and similar public health services. This morning I got lucky. Two of the birds were locked in some kind of aerial duet. I couldn’t tell whether they were making love or war. In either case, it tired them out and one of them chose a perch in the fennel that, a month ago, belonged to the Red-winged Blackbirds. The swallow sat just within my lens range. It isn’t an Audubon quality image, but it gets the job done. Next time you see one of these birds — and they’re flying in numbers these days — you’ll know what it is and what it does. There is one big unanswered question: where are they building their nests? They prefer human made structures, hence the name. But there aren’t any barns in the park. If you see one of their nests will you let me know?
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