A Dizzying Deluge of Tree Swallows

At this time of year, the Tree Swallows are swarming in the Cape May area, just as they did in Stone’s time. He described their flights in Bird Studies at Old Cape May: “The birds would suddenly scatter from the dense flock and pour over the country in all directions, as if belching forth from some enclosure of which the door had been suddenly opened…They flew low over the bushes and poured by close above my head until it seemed as if the whole sky was in motion and I felt dizzy…Once again they turn and going with the wind are fairly swept from the skies, and we see them far to leeward like a swarm of gnats, gathering once more to face the gale.” Although there probably aren’t as many Tree Swallows around as there used to be, on a good day they still congregate in sufficient numbers to make a modern observer feel as dizzy as Dr. Stone.

TRES

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