The beauty of some rather common place birds often takes me totally by surprise! I have seen hundreds of Barn Swallows in flight before but never really examined their features in close detail before. Yesterday I had been watching a flock of sheep beside a barn and there were several Barn Swallows flying about as well. Sitting in my car, I was not really being very successful when attempting to get a photo of a swallow. Just before moving on I saw three sitting on overhead wires to my left and started to take a picture just as they flew away. Missed oppor- tunity I thought; but what a surprise when I downloaded my pictures this morning. What a magificent design on this Barn Swallow's undertail. From my photo archives (June 30, 2001), a female Barn Swallow tends to young swallows still in their nest. This nest was built high in the rafters of the Starkey Covered Bridge which crosses Long Creek at Coles Island.