Feeding Time for Juvenile Barn Swallows: July 2021

While prowling about on seldom travelled country roads in Pickering, I came across three juvenile Barn Swallows on a hydro wire. The unusual sky colour is the result of far away forest fire smoke which has been drifting over our area.

Occasionally they would all excitedly flap their wings

and their beaks would open wide.

Every few minutes a parent would arrive with a tasty insect and put it as far down the throat of their chick as possible.

Each of the three chicks received a regular morsel.

Here are more photos of the activities.


I will identify it at the end of the post.

More swallows:


This dusky-coloured bird with a long bill is a juvenile Starling.

European Starling (juvenile)


Deep in the midnight the rain whips the leaves,
Softly and sadly the wood-spirit grieves.
But when the first hue of dawn tints the sky,
I shall shake out my wings like the birds and be dry;
And though, like the rain-drops, I grieved through the dark,
I shall wake in the morning to sing with the lark.           – Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872–1906)

Miles Hearn

3 thoughts on “Feeding Time for Juvenile Barn Swallows: July 2021

  1. Joyce Sparks

    Thanks for this great series of feeding time photos Miles. One would almost want to add captions. 👍🏻

  2. Lisa Volkov

    Absolutely amazing. What wonderful pictures! An album in itself–I’m so glad you stuck around to take an extended sequence of photos. And thanks for explaining the background colour, resulting from such an otherwise horrible situation. Because it could almost seem like a deliberate “creative choice”, it enhances their colours so beautifully. Like the orange half moon I saw on a previous night. Beautiful, but a reflection of something deadly. Thanks, Miles!

  3. Gloria James

    Those young swallows sure like the menu! The parents are sure busy at feeding time!
    The poem is beautiful and matches our rainy summer.


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