Date: 8/1/20 12:51 pm
From: Allen Chartier <amazilia3...>
Subject: Re: [birders] Essay on Swifts and an OT connection
Bev,

I have seen Common Ravens doing this out west. They are known to be quite
acrobatic, especially in courtship.

Allen T. Chartier
Inkster, Michigan
Email: <amazilia3...>
Photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/mihummingbirdguy/collections/
Website/Blog: http://mihummingbirdguy.blogspot.com/



On Sat, Aug 1, 2020 at 10:29 AM Beverly Wolf <Bev_Wolf...> wrote:

> Another OT connection. Many years ago, before I joined the list, my
> husband and I were out west. I’m a little sketchy on some details – it
> would have been Utah, Nevada, or California – and the bird in question was
> either a crow or raven. The incident however is clear as a bell. While my
> husband and I were out hiking around, a large black bird zoomed overhead
> and as we watched it, it went into a glide and performed a perfect
> barrel-roll, while it continued on. We both turned to each other and
> exclaimed at the same time ‘Did you see that?!’ We were amazed and in
> awe. We had a lot of enjoyment talking about this and in the end we
> decided it was an expression of pure joy in the art of flight.
>
>
>
> Has anyone else seen this display, or heard of it, or have a less
> fantasized explanation?
>
>
>
> Bev Wolf
>
> Waterford
>
>
>
> *From:* Fred Kaluza <fkaluza...>
> *Sent:* Saturday, August 1, 2020 9:20 AM
> *To:* <ajf-jlf...>; <birders...>
> *Subject:* Re: [birders] Essay on Swifts and an OT connection
>
>
>
> Great article John and thanks for posting. I too as a child recall being
> frustrated by “noisy birds” that would never find a perch so I could better
> assess them. Summer birds like Nighthawks and Swallows never seemed
> interested in sitting still. To this day I marvel at photos of “inverse
> birds” like flying Owls or flying Turkeys or perching Martins and nesting
> Nighthawks. We so often are otherwise accustomed to knowing them only in
> their more familiar postures.
>
>
>
>
>
> On Thu, Jul 30, 2020 at 11:57 AM -0400, "John Farmer" <
> <ajf-jlf...> wrote:
>
> A lyrical essay on Swifts in today's NYT (here
> <https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/29/magazine/vesper-flights.html?campaign_id=9&emc=edit_nn_20200730&instance_id=20794&nl=the-morning&regi_id=73744212&segment_id=34737&te=1&user_id=d635218edb5785eb5289c336dd5362a7>)
> by Helen Macdonald, the author of *H is for Hawk,* may interest some
> birders. It set me to wondering if I may be the only person on this
> listserv who had not heard of the swifts' "vesper flight" that she details.
>
>
>
> I also question her statement that "…As soon as they tip themselves free
> of the nest hole, they start flying, and they will not stop flying for two
> or three years, bathing in rain, feeding on airborne insects, winnowing
> fast and low to scoop fat mouthfuls of water from lakes and rivers."
> Despite the fact that she provides references to many aspects of the vesper
> flights of Europe's Common Swifts, that sentence seems to spring from the
> common folklore that portrayed swifts as spending their entire lives on the
> wing. Does anyone know if there is any research to back up that quoted
> statement?
>
>
>
> And here I'm definitely going OT, but IMHO, the final paragraph in
> Macdonald's essay is a haunting, if unintended, link to another piece in
> today's NYT - the poignant swan song of the late Congressman John Lewis.
>
>
>
> JF
>
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