Barn Swallow card



Barn Swallow card by Julian Williams

SKU: B38

The Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)

Greeting card with coloured envelope featuring common visitors to the bird table

The cards and mugs in this series are ideal gifts and cards for bird lovers

TEXT written on the back of the card

The Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica)

The aerodynamic Barn Swallows have evolved to hunt flying insects over open ground and nest on rocky outcrops and in caves.  With the coming of man they benefitted from forest clearance and the nesting sites provided by urban environments.  This cohabitation with humans is well observed in ancient writing which tell us: What is cleverer than to possess the unbounded freedom of flight and to entrust one’s home and offspring to the houses of men, where nothing will attack them?

Across the ages swallows have been appreciated as symbols of good luck and better things to come.  William Shakespeare tells us  “True hope is swift, and flies with swallow’s wings”. 

Swallow tattoos were a popular emblem of safe return amongst sailors.   One swallow represented travelling 5,000 nautical miles, two swallows 10,000.  Farmers appreciated swallows for eating flies and insects and had superstitious beliefs that to destroy their nests would bring bad luck causing their chickens to stop laying and cows to produce bloody milk.

There are six subspecies four of which make long migrations between the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.  They are found in every continent except Antarctica.



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