Thursday, July 18, 2013
Cliff Swallow nesting sites
A few days ago I checked up on the Cliff Swallows on Belle Chase Highway, at the bridge over the intracoastal waterway. It was quite active, with nests easily visible from below on both the north and south sides of the bridge. Some are pretty low- nice views. This colony is described on pages 30-31 of Birding Made Easy-New Orleans.
There were about 30 birds buzzing around the south end of the bridge, and 10 at the north end- both quite close.
I did not see anything but Cliffs- so if you go, you can be assured that is what you are seeing (at other colonies, Barn Swallows are also present and they mix).
This is a good viewing site because you can look up at the nests from dry ground- many swallow colonies are over water. But go soon- they will be done nesting pretty quickly. Most nests have probably already finished.
Another good colony of Cliffs to view from dry ground, though smaller, is underneath the Ted Hickey Bridge on Leon C. Simon in Orleans Parish (near the UNO Lakefront Arena).
for a copy of Birding Made Easy-New Orleans, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or look for it at the Maple Street or Garden District Book Shops.