Male Tree Swallow in flight

Male Tree Swallow in flightMale Tree Swallow in flight – Nikon D200, f6.3, 1/1250, ISO 400, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light

I have been seeing Tree Swallows this past week, another sure sign of Spring’s impending arrival. I’ve seen them skimming over fields looking for insects and enjoyed the brilliant flashes of the sapphire blues of the males.

This image was taken two years ago at Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge in Montana and for some reason I had not processed it until now. The Tree Swallows were looking to take over an active Mountain Bluebird nest box and the Bluebirds were busy defending the nest box while still trying to find food for their chicks. It was actually very interesting to watch and photograph the skirmishes.



  1. Mia McPherson April 13, 2013 at 12:23 pm

    Thank you Chris, Susan and Dave.

  2. Dave Sparks April 6, 2013 at 4:21 am

    Impressive! Such a tough shot to get.

  3. Susan March 28, 2013 at 8:56 pm

    Awesome, I’ve never been able to get a decent shot of these birds

  4. Rohrerbot March 28, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    Great image Mia! Love their colors:)

  5. Julie Brown March 25, 2013 at 10:46 am

    You nailed it, Mia! Not easy to do with these birds.

  6. Beverly Everson March 24, 2013 at 1:26 pm

    Gorgeous bird! Great capture! These guys are fast!!!

    • Mia McPherson March 26, 2013 at 6:49 am

      Thanks Beverly, they really are fast.

  7. Tami March 24, 2013 at 12:34 pm

    Wow – incredible photo, Mia! The colors and detail are amazing…

    • Mia McPherson March 26, 2013 at 6:49 am

      Thank you Tami. I loves the blues these male Tree Swallows show.

  8. Ricky March 24, 2013 at 9:49 am

    Excellent work Mia!

  9. M. Firpi March 24, 2013 at 8:32 am

    I love those iridescent blue feathers.

    • Mia McPherson March 26, 2013 at 6:48 am

      Thanks Maria, I love those iridescent blues too

  10. Larry Jordan March 24, 2013 at 8:07 am

    A truly amazing capture Mia. I have Tree Swallows in my nest boxes every year and I know how difficult they are to photograph on the wing. He is gorgeous and the light is perfect. Awesome!

    • Mia McPherson March 26, 2013 at 6:48 am

      Thanks Larry, they are such a handsome species.

  11. eric c11 March 24, 2013 at 5:39 am

    it s not so easy to get it in fligth, because they are very fast,
    but when you get it, it s always a pleasure at the end, well catched mia

    where i m living, swalows arent comes yet, but it s not far, it s always a pleasure to dicover it again each saeson

    to show you somes swallows who live there, a comon swallow in the village
    the Barn Swallow (but on this shoot, we don t see bottom neck colors

    an an other specie, a bit more rare here,
    the with a Red-rumped Swallow

    have a good sunday mia, here it s raining 🙁

    • Mia McPherson March 26, 2013 at 6:47 am

      Eric, thank you for sharing your swallow images from France, they sure are beautiful!

      They are hard to capture in flight which makes me even happier when I can get a sharp image of one flying.

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