Surprise! More birds today. (Where are you insect folks?)
Reader Mal Morrison from Devon sent pictures of Common Swifts and some information:
For some time I’ve been trying to get some decent photos of Swifts (Apus apus) in flight. This is partly because I find them fascinating but mainly because capturing images present a real challenge. There are difficulties because of their speed and erratic flight and also with exposing a dark bird against a bright sky. These were taken just outside my home in Plymouth, Devon. While the birds are quite often high on the wing, they occasionally return to their nesting area and fly at low level over the rooftops and trees. Whether they do this just to check out ‘home’ or maybe for orientation I have no idea but they were doing this when these were taken. Swifts eat, mate and sleep in the air. (According to this site, they can sleep/fly as high as 10000 feet!)
Mal added this:
These were taken with a Canon EOS 5D Mk 3 camera using the 100-400mm lens with an exposure of 2000th of a second.
And what is a set of bird photos without one by Stephen Barnard from Idaho? This one came in an email titled “Swainson’s Hawk starting a dive for prey.”
Swainson’s Hawk (Buteo swainsoni) is found in the western U.S. and Canada and overwinters in southeastern South America. Here’s its range from the Cornell Ornithology site: