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Posted by: atowhee | June 20, 2019

MALHEUR–THE CLIFF SWALLOWS’ USE OF PEOPLE AND THEIR STUFF

The constructions hominids scatter across the land are often adopted by local birds.  The Cliff Swallow is one of the most adept at using any bridge, building or freeway overpass as the foundation for a colony. One our Field Station birding trips around the Malheur area we were always pleased to see Cliff Swallows…think of all the mosquitoes they eat…every day.
Here is colony on the P Ranch watch tower, also used at night as a roost by local Turkey Vultures.  We saw the cliffies down gathering nest mud along the canal beneath the Central Patrol Road bridge at P Ranch.  Their nervous chatter followed them as they gathered, carried, built and swooped back for more.  When you build something, aren’t you glad you don’t have to carry the lumber or cement in YOUR mouth?

 

Here are some of the nests under the eave of the privately-owned Diamond Craters Visitors Center along Lava Beds Road. You have to admire the duplex on top of the Christmas light…

 

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