Cliff Swallow Feeding Fiasco

August 19, 2013  •  Leave a Comment

What happens when two Cliff Swallows try to feed chicks at the same time? Here's a sequence of photos of two adult Cliff Swallows trying to do just that. First, we have a nest of three Cliff Swallow chicks.Cliff Swallow chicks

The first adult arrives and feeds one of the chicks:Cliff Swallows

A second adult arrives on the scene:

Cliff Swallows There's a bit of confusion as the first adult seems in the way of the second one:Cliff Swallows

I don't know whether Adult #2 is pulling the Adult #1 away, or simply hooks its claws into the first object available, but you can see that it has grabbed the other by the top of the wing:

Cliff Swallows Adult #1 is pulled back, but hasn't let go, as Adult #2 tries to reach the chicks:Cliff Swallows

Adult #2 is slipping back and getting farther from the chicks, while Adult #1 is still hanging on:Cliff Swallows

Adult #2 has both claws on the wing of Adult #1, but it's not helping. The chick, however, is anticipating a meal:Cliff Swallows

This really isn't working:Cliff Swallows

Something's got to give:Cliff Swallows

Adult #2 is trying to climb up Adult #1, while Adult #1 looks like it's planning an escape, even though it is still hanging on:Cliff Swallows

The chick is giving up:Cliff Swallows

What Adult #1 is saying is left to the imagination:Cliff Swallows

Adult #1 finally lets go:Cliff Swallows

That feeding attempt was a fail!Cliff Swallows

Really, it works much better one adult at a time (this is ten minutes later):Cliff Swallow feeding chick

 


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