An unusual overnight guest


The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Hello everyone :-)

I just want to share a little story, that occurred last night. While I was meditating on my balcony in the evening, I was wondering why there are no bird noises that usually fill the air in my big city backyard: Doves, sparrows, great tits, magpies and crows. I like to listen to these noises. Maybe it was already late or maybe... I was thinking about the Tunguska event that has been discussed on the Randall Carlson show that I'm currently watching. There it has been observed by eyewitnesses that the day of the catastrophy has been unusually quiet, the quiet before the storm as the saying goes. Anyway, later that day, an hour after sundown, I was talking to friend on the phone, when I suddenly heard scratching noises coming from the balcony door. A strange animal that I couldn't identify at first was scratching at the bottom of the glass door, as if it wanted to get in, like knocking on the door. After closer inspection it turned out to be a swift as I could tell from the shape of its pointy wings. In German it's called "Mauersegler" which literally translates into "wall swift".

I always like to observe them flying over the roof tops. They have beautiful silhouetes seen from below and they make high pitch screeching noises, which sound quite cute. This one seems to have crash-landed on my balcony. Since it couldn't fly away I thought it might be injured although there were no obvious signs of injury. The feathers looked beautiful and healthy. After I did some research about the proper way to deal with these little fellows, I put it into a properly prepared shoe box and let it spent the night inside. I wanted to prevent it from crash landing somewhere else after an attempt to leave the balcony. I also tried to give it water but it wasn't interested. It didn't seem to be afraid of humans, very tame in fact. But it's hard to tell how it really experiences the situation. I wanted its encounter with a third density being to be as pleasant as possible.

I did some more research and learned that this species spends most of it's life in the air and for anatomical reasons is unable to take off once they have ended up on the ground. It can't jump around as other birds. It only eats insects and shouldn't be fed with anything else. I also switched off the alarm clock so that it didn't get shocked by the sudden noise in the morning. I've learned that they are also very sensitive to noise.

The next day I got up early. It already scratched at the inside of the box. I was planning to bring it to a wild animal admitting facility and have some bird expert have a look. But first I called a local wild bird specialist and she advised me to first make sure, if the bird could fly away with a little bit of a jump start. I went down to the backyard and put it on my right hand. It was shivering which is a sign of preparation for take off as the specialist told me (accelerated heart beat). I tried to gently shake it off by moving my hand up and down and lo and behold: after some hesitation it started flying from wall to wall and back to the air until it managed to get over the roofs in an upward spiral and flew away. So it seems, it wasn't injured after all. I guess it just needed a little help to get back on its wings. ;) I called the local bird expert again to tell her how the story ended and that I hope it's alright. We speculated about the reason why it might have ended up on my balcony. She thanked me for my help and I thanked her for hers.

Seeing that beautiful bird up close, it's innocent nature, to be able to connect to something that I can only observe from far away, was very heartening. I'm glad that nature paid me a visit that way.



The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Vous avez été un bon samaritain pour ce bel oiseau... Merci d'avoir partagé votre histoire et sa beauté avec nous...

You've been a Good Samaritan to that beautiful bird... Thank you for sharing your story and its beauty with us...


Padawan Learner
Beautiful story and a really nice photo @floetus. Thank you for sharing! Such an encounter with the beautiful bird is indeed very heartening.

You reminded me of a similar incident I had two years ago. Upon returning to the apartment, I heard strange noises from the living room and found a swift that must have flew through the open window. Fortunately, it took a break from flying from wall to wall and sat on the curtain.
I managed to pick it up and let it out of the window. Fortunately it was not injured and flew away without problems. I watched it soar to finally join the group of other swifts. It was a great feeling to watch a bird ascending from my hand and flying away to where it belongs.

By the way, it reminded me of yet another incident with a bird when a great tit flew into the room through the window and somehow managed to scare my sister's dog. Poor puppy, for the next few days she was really frightened and kept looking up nervously almost all the time ;-)


FOTCM Member
Beautiful birdy and interesting coincidence! I'm happy that it went up again. As it happens, just the last week or so ago I noticed for the first time that a big flock of what I assume to be a Mauerseglers (or maybe swallow birds, I'm not sure) is flying in incredible maneuvers and speeds around our area/house in the evenings. The sounds they give of that you have describe sound similar too. I watched them for a while in the evenings and their flying skills are quite amazing to watch, as well as their aerodynamic shapes. I guess the military got the inspiration for some of the fast and maneuverable fighter jets from that or similar birds and how they are designed and are flying.

Also quite amazing that they indeed are almost constantly in the air (up to 10 months non-stop) and sleep in the air.


The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Thanks floetus for that fascinating account.

One of the old names for swifts in the UK was "devil birds" - probably due to the fact that they scream dementedly as they fly about at top speed. Very much the sound of high summer in many urban centres across Europe. Here's such a performance -



Jedi Council Member
Swifts and most birds are totems of hope, but the swift is special because of it's speed, and also, yes, they have a hard time taking off - this means their movements are typically calculated to prevent being grounded. What a potent omen. Do you think you have the ability to make fast calculations and adjustments to prevent being thrown off course like your friend?
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