BBRP – Swallow Box Activity Report

by Chris McVittie (May 23, 2017)

Swallow eggs, taken with endoscope (CMcV)

These last few days, I have either opened or used an endoscope to check the boxes.  Up until this opening I have just observed nest box activity [on a number of outings].

The nest boxes are quite active with eggs being laid.  Only one nest has chicks [House Sparrow], hatched in last 2-3 days.

Summary
House Sparrow nests                         10
Tree Swallow nests with eggs          13
Tree Swallow nests no eggs               5
Chickadee [probable]                          1
Empty [or not checked]                     30  [4 were not checked due to undergrowth, 3 of these are probable House Sparrow, 1 I was unable to open]

Total # boxes                                     50 [19 new this year]

Highlights

1.  Activity in new boxes is light

12 along dyke [1 swallow nest 5 eggs, 3 nests partially built, 8 empty]
5 in interior along fence [1 swallow nest 3 eggs, 1 being fought over Sparrow and Swallow, 3 Empty]
2 behind pump house inside [1 swallow nest 4 eggs, 1 Empty]

2.   One box [107] that was Tree Swallow was taken over by Sparrows.

Result 1 dead Swallow.  Something similar might happen at [103] Swallow nest observed last week, house sparrow in and out on Saturday.

3.   Two boxes by raptor trail 26 and 27 both have Swallows in with eggs

4.    Use of endoscope without ladder makes it easier on nest checker AKA “Swallow Whisperer”

5.    Checking boxes takes quite a while as many people [a dozen] were interested in finding out about the project.  Conversations were quite long.

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About dncb

DNS: Delta Naturalists are a group of nature lovers whose aim is to foster interest in the natural history of the Fraser delta by sharing and enjoying nature and promoting environmental awareness and conservation. DNCB: Delta Nats Casual Birders is a group of Casual Birders who go Birding at different locations each week, usually within the Lower Mainland or in nearby Washington State.
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