Last night I went to the Purple Martin Festival downtown with some friends. We ate dinner at a great Cuban restaurant and then crossed the street to wait for the birds to return to their roost.
Since 2006, thousands of Purple Martins congregate at the Farmers Market in downtown Richmond, VA. They gather here for about a month before their migration to Brazil. During the day, they fly out over the James River and return every evening around 8:00. They roost in the Bradford Pear trees that you see on the left side of this photo. The whole process is perfectly choreographed. First you see a small flock of tiny specks in the sky. After a while it becomes very large and then they dive down to the trees. This happens several times before they are all settled for the night. Watching them in the sky was like seeing a giant kaleidoscope as they changed formation.
I'd like to thank all of you who left comments on my post about Arabelle. I appreciate the advice and want you to know that I have one possibility right now for a new home for her. I will keep you posted!