Twist and shout?

First up, an apology on behalf of WP. I check blog posts through the Reader first then select which ones I will click on for the full version. Mostly I only get an extract in the Reader. Unfortunately WP is posting things in a strange order and some not at all. Others I get 3 times. When I go in I always go back to where I left off last time but it seems that no longer works. WP seems to be posting some blogs late and as they appear in roughly chronological order I have to go back quite a way to make sure I have not missed any. So I apologise if I have missed any of your posts. It is not through intent. I hope this will resolve itself soon but it seems to have been going on for a couple of weeks at least. And so to business.

After Sai Kung’s answer to Statler & Waldorf we revert to the bird world today. Sighs of relief all round. Jenny suggested a caption competition and so I decided I could combine the two and therefore invite captions for this scene:

Barn SwallowsWe would love to have the swallows nest again in our garage. When we first moved to this house the swallows fledges a full brood.Feeding time-2But then in the next 2 years the nest was destroyed. We never discovered how. There are endless theories from neighbourly sabotage to cats to a bird of prey. The location is difficult for a bird of prey to get at. A cat could possibly leap from one of the cars to the nest but it would be Olympic style long and high jumping combined. That leaves the unpleasant idea of  deliberate destruction. Why anybody would do that is a mystery but swallows are considered lucky and possibly someone thought that if they could not nest in our garage they would go to theirs. Last year the swallows did not even try to nest here. Whether the current prospecting turns into a nest we shall see. I did read that inexperienced birds can build weak nests that collapse. But two years running? This year we have one of the CCTV cameras trained on this corner of the garage so if the worst happens we can replay the recording and see what occurred. The cameras are infra red so day or night we will have a record. Of course someone could cover the camera….. But then we will know it wasn’t a bird of prey or cat! The compound is gated and has night patrols so it would have to be an ‘inside job’. One for M. Poirot perhaps or Miss Marple.

So, what are the swallows saying to one another? Over to you.

35 thoughts on “Twist and shout?

  1. Captioning is hit or miss with me, Andrew. Most find mine hard to swallow.
    Have you considered birds as your culprits (besides b’sop). I am not familiar with swallow habits but some birds do destroy nests before rebuilding and others destroy to discourage territory interlopers.

    • And, for what it’s worth…I don’t even look at the WP reader. I have subscribed to each blog of interest and receive an email upon new publishings. So if I miss commenting it is because of my unfortunate overlooking and not any blame to WP.

      • I used to do that Steve but my e mail became overwhelmed so I switched to the reader. I suppose I could set up a system to divert them to a separate folder but that smacks of initiative and is off the agenda.

    • I must do some research on swallow nests, Stephen. If it is not human intervention then I guess it ought to be well documented.

      • Ah! I confused you with Stephen Hipperson. I am easy – I answer to Andrew or Andy. I have no preference on that matter. I was always an Andy to my family and friends until I worked in an office with 3 Andys. I changed to being an Andrew at work to reduce the confusion and it stuck. But my oldest friends from pre-work days still call me Andy.

      • No worries, Andy Andrew. May I call you AA? LOL I like Andrew best, I think. Dignified and intelligent, which is how I think of you. Should we ever have the good fortune to meet in the flesh, I shall call you Andy as I give you a big hug. 🙂
        I thought it was a confusion. I really don’t mind being called Steve or Stephen although the latter does sound a bit strange coming from a friend. My mother called me Stevie. No one else ever has, that I can recall, and it might confuse me with the Nicks person. The only thing I do not like being called is “Sir”. Don’t know why, but I just find it off-putting despite the respect it has attached.

  2. They clearly both sing “FC Baaayern – foreeever number oooone, you can call us the Chaaaampions of the woooorld…!” 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Great photos that made me smile, Andrew. I hope they do come back for nesting to you!!!

  3. Andrew, my apologies for being so late in reading your recent posts, I’ve had a house ‘nest’ full of family staying. It’s far to early in the morning for me to come up with a witty swallow-themed tagline for your beautiful photos but, I can maybe help you with the disappearance of the nest. In Indonesia swallows nests are much sought after. Apparently the birds spittle used in the making of the nests is highly valued by the Chinese for making their famous birds nest soup. They are collected and sold for good money. Possibly someone in your neighbourhood had the same idea?

    • I didn’t know they go for swallow nests, Lottie. There is in Malaysia a thing called the Edible-nest Swiftlet and their nests are, as it says on the tin, edible after due preparation and processing. I have eaten bird’s nest soup but I confess I spat out the feathers. I put it in the same category as shark’s fin soup. Give me a can of Heinz 57 any day.

  4. 1st, (This is a new Swallow pair) “How could you NOT like it! The roof is solid, no leaks, and won’t need to be replaced EVER!” We are house hunting. Perhaps I’ve examined one too many roofs today.
    2nd, “I…..can’t…….breath!”
    I’d call in the experts on Silent Witness to solve this nest destroying crime. Hopefully, your CCTV is a strong enough deterrent.

    • Oh I hate house hunting. I leave Shirley to do the viewings as she enjoys it. Then I go only to see the short listed places. She rarely sticks to the budget though!

  5. ‘Mum said it was my turn for the plastic perch, so there.’ ‘See if I care!’
    Good luck with the swallows, my birding brother had a similar sadness in their outhouse, but they have not reappeared, and there is no one to blame (unless… do rival swallows ever destroy nests?). We have martins here, most years we get at least two nests full, last year all three were filled and at least two broods in one. The only problem is, we must get the bargeboards on the house painted and the painter’s father is sick, so now we will need to put it off until the autumn… again.

    • I wish we had House Martins. There is an Asian version. The perch is a street lamp outside on the pavement – I need to tell the management it needs a coat of paint. One opted for a Bougainvillea branch later on. They are very indecisive.

  6. I’m having similar problems with WordPress. It’s driving me mad.
    First picture: “I don’t care what you say. I told you, I’m not migrating anywhere.”
    Second picture: ” … you’re not singing, you’re not singing, you’re not singing any more … “

  7. “Don’t speak to me like that! – you just wait till your father gets home …!”
    I fear that Automattic’s highly unpopular new regime is proving highly unsatisfactory technically, as well …
    These are gorgeous pic.s, Andrew …

  8. “I can sing anything you can sing louder, I can sing anything louder than you”; “No you can’t”. “Yes I can. “No you can’t”. “Yes I can, Yes I can Yes I can”.
    number two:
    Muffled “I can’t get my head back out…”

  9. Photo no.1: ” Mr swallow; I don’t want to hear anymore of your rhetoric about location, location. I say this is not a good place to build our home. Two years of a failed house and I’m tired of starting over.”

    Photo no 2. “Alright, alright. You’ll all get your turn. One mouth at a time, kids.”

  10. It will be an interesting experiment – so long as somebody does get into you property through the area your camera used to cover.
    Maybe you could fix a small piece of wood on the bracket to act as more of a shelf and thus give the birds more of a chance for a stable base for a nest.
    As to WP reader… I’ve had similar problems. I can understand the late posts as various servers get into sync but I’m not sure about reappearances of posts of already seen and ‘liked’.

    • I have thought of the shelf Stephen and if we see signs of occupation I think I’ll put one up. It would also act as a poop catcher.

      • They do make a mess don’t they. I can see why some people discourage them. I believe that it’s illegal to knock down nests over here – whether they are partially built or complete.

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