This article features some images of amorous swallows pursuing their need to procreate, and continue the survival of their species.
As regular readers will know, my favourite location in the area to photograph swallows is Grimsby Lagoons Wetlands (often locally called Biggar Lagoons Wetlands). All of the images in this article were captured handheld while I was standing in the main blind at the wetlands.
Our first series of images is of a male swallow approaching a perched female, then changing its mind just as it was about to mount her.
NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.
It is actually fairly common for attempts at mating to be interrupted or aborted. Perhaps the male notices another suitor in the area or is otherwise distracted.
This pair of amorous swallows was persistent with their mating behaviour and the male quickly returned and was successful with his second attempt. In fact, this same pair of amorous swallows mated several times within just a couple of minutes.
Swallows will often mate as a dedicated pair during a particular mating season, but do not necessarily bond for life. A number of other bird species do mate for life. These include California Condors, Whooping Cranes, Scarlett Macaws, Mute Swans, Laysan Albatross, Black Vultures, Bald Eagles and some other species.
Our last series of amorous swallows photographs show a male bird approaching, mating, then launching back into flight. This series of consecutive images is composed of a number of short Pro Capture H image bursts that were captured in rapid succession.
OM-D E-M1X + M.Zuiko 100-400 mm f/5-6.3 IS with MC-14 teleconverter @ 261 mm, efov 522 mm, f/8.4, 1/3200, ISO-5000, Pro Capture H, cropped to 3466 pixels on the width, subject distance 6 metres
Photographing birds often comes down to being in the right place, at the right time, with the right camera equipment.
Photographs were captured handheld using camera gear as noted in the EXIF data. Images were produced from RAW files using my standard process. I used my standard Pro Capture H settings for the images featured in this article. Both Pre-Shutter Frames and Frame Limiter were set to 15. I shot at 60 frames-per-second with a single small auto-focus point. Auto focus and exposure was locked by the first frame in each Pro Capture H run. This is the 1,320 article published on this website since its original inception in 2015.
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