I was parked at Miner’s Cove, which is at the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma, watching and photographing Pied-billed Grebes. I noticed a small flock of Tree Swallows moving in my direction.

These tiny birds, known for their iridescent blue-green feathers and forked tails, were swooping and diving in the air with remarkable agility. As they drew nearer to my location, I noticed they seemed to be fixated on a dead tree, attempting to land on its bare branches. I was able to get this photo by shooting from inside my pickup. They soon moved on.

A Tree Swallow Above Me

A Tree Swallow Above Me

Tree Swallows, a species of bird commonly found in North America, are known for their aerial acrobatics and their use of nest boxes. They often congregate in large flocks during migration season, and can be found in a variety of habitats, including forests, wetlands, and grasslands. They primarily feed on insects and are considered to be an essential part of the ecosystem due to their role in controlling insect populations.

In addition to their ecological significance, Tree Swallows are also fascinating creatures to observe and photograph. Their striking appearance and playful behavior make them a favorite subject among bird enthusiasts and photographers alike.

Unique Information on the Tree Swallow:

  • They are the smallest of the North American swallows.
  • They are monogamous and mate for life.
  • They build their nests in tree cavities or nest boxes.
  • They lay 5-7 eggs, which hatch after about 12 days.
  • The young birds fledge from the nest after about 16 days.
  • Tree swallows are migratory birds and winter in South America.
  • They are an important part of the food chain and help to control insect populations.

Gear Used:

  • Camera: Canon EOS R5
  • Lens: Canon RF 100-500 mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM


  • Location: Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge (Oklahoma)
  • Date and Time Taken: April 9, 2023 (10:07 A. M.)
  • Exposure Mode: Manual
  • Aperture: f8
  • Shutter speed: 1/3200
  • ISO: 1000 (Auto)
  • Exposure Compensation: 0
  • Focal Length: 500 mm

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