Bank Swallows

June 13, 2013 in Nearby Landbirds

Found over much of the world, the Bank Swallow (known as the Sand Martin in Eurasia) is one of the most wide ranging of the North American swallows. In Massachusetts, it is a locally common species but is limited in its distribution by the availability of suitable nesting sites. The smallest of the six swallow species that nest in the state, it is the only one that rarely uses artificial nesting sites.   According to Mass Audubon State of the Birds Report, “the Bank Swallow requires riverbanks and gravel pits for nesting, but its distribution in Massachusetts has declined significantly to a somewhat restricted level in recent years. This is possibly due to the fact that these habitats have become more restricted or because of a general decline in the abundance of the flying insects that constitute the species’ diet.  Discovered this nesting colony recently and observed a beehive of activity! 

3 photos posted from heavy overcast morning:   Click “next” upper right to advance frames…enjoy!