Barn SwallowJuly 2010

As I had written about tree swallows some five years ago: Swallows are the turbocharged flyers of the bird world. They fly, charge, dart, hover, swoop, and twirl while having fun, eating insects, and frustrating photographers.

This year has seen a pretty good collection of barn swallows at the Toftrees pond. Unfortunately, they don't stay still that often, and so one of my best group photos was obtained by shooting through reeds, which explains the greenish twinge.

Three barn swallows
  Barn swallows are somewhat similar to tree swallows except that barn swallows have a reddish forehead and throat and a blush breast. The latter is most conspicuous during breeding season.

Barn swallows are 0 to 60 mph flyers (so to say). Consider the next photo, taken at 1/500 second in which there is already a strong motion blur at takeoff.

Barn swallow takeoff
  (And if not for an earlier photo showing the barn swallow perched, I would have assumed that it was a tree swallow.)

Photo note: I used a Pentax K200D, with the SMC 1000mm reflex lens, for the photos that were taken in May and July 2010, respectively.

My Pennsylvania bird list

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