Monday, 16 May 2011


Conditions for catching at the sewage works were not ideal, mainly due to the wind, but a handful of Swifts were caught along with Swallows and House Martin. What you can see in the hand but not the field is the subtle pale fringing around the white throat and just how short the legs are.

If you've ever wondered how Swift species can just hang on to a wall vertically then I can attest that they have needle sharp claws which are deployed with a vice like grip from above and below. One bird in particular just locked on and took some effort to extract from my finger. The other thing I always find with Swifts is the parasitic flat flies that are used to the host being airborne 99% of the time must wonder why everything's gone quiet so come out for a look. I ususally 'remove' them as a parting gift before the birds go on their way.

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