Swallows are back in West Texas

WEST TEXAS (KWES) - The swallows are back again!

Which means it's springtime, but before you get annoyed that a new mud nest is being created under your roof, get a chance to get to know them.

"I mean there is different species of swallows of course. The ones we have out here in the underpasses, those are cliff swallows, but the ones that are in town, those are barn swallows," said Michael Nickel with the Sibley Nature Center.

Image by Larry Smith

Barn Swallows are the ones that you can find at UTPB. If you go to the campus in the morning near the Mesa building in the quad area there is a swarm of them.

You can find the birds hanging in the in the honeycomb-looking roof while they fly in and out making their muds nests.

By late morning all the birds fly out and start circling around to get momentum then they are all gone up in the sky and away from the campus.

Those flight skills come in handy when catching dinner.

"Very fast at flight, highly maneuverable. They are excellent at aerial acrobatics and they have to be to catch insects on the wing," said Nickel.

But not everyone is happy the birds are back. A big concern is that swallows can carry diseases.

"They carry with them different kinds of ticks and bugs which is an issue that we have dealt with in the past and the exterminate is an issue as well," said Tatum Hubbard, Chief of Staff Executive Director of Communication, UTPB.

If you want to get rid of them, you must make sure you do it the right way because there are both state and federal laws that protect them.

"You can't disturb these nests once the mom and dad are nesting or they have laid eggs, so you have to in the very early stages get rid of any evidence of their mud nests and they are quick and diligent," said Hubbard.

For now, it looks like the students and birds will have to co-habit as one.

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