In July, I took a long weekend to visit my aunt up in New York state. I was watching the aerial show of dozens of swallows from the kitchen, marveling at their swooping antics. Upstate New York had been experiencing day after day of soggy weather and no doubt there were plenty of gnats and mosquitoes for these birds.
There is a young cat whom the swallows had taken a peculiar dislike to; they were constantly dive-bombing him whenever he would saunter across the vast parking area. He was completely unperturbed about the whole thing despite the swallows coming within inches of his royal catness.
It became obvious why these birds were so intent on driving kitty away. I took a photo of these scamps up under the eaves of the house. The little guy is giving me the beady eye.
The Cornell Ornithology site has this:
“Look for Barn Swallows feeding above meadows, fields, and farmyards and over water, or perched on wires near feeding areas and nesting sites. During the breeding season keep an eye on mud puddles, as Barn Swallows come to the ground to pick up mud and grass for nesting materials. Their mud nests are often tucked under the eaves of barns and stables, on structures near playing fields, or under bridges. You can find Barn Swallows across most of North America. ”
Although they aren’t birds to come to suet feeders, you can attract them down if you leave oyster shells or ground eggshells on a platform.