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You say you always have nests on the house. Did you have young that fledged last year?
We have same problem up here in North Cumbria, it feels almost errie, no swallows..no house martins nesting, something is very wrong, its just too quiet.
I'd heard about the horrendous netting practice during migration, but I didn't realise the scale of the problem until I watched Chris Packhams piece on it recently.
We did have lots of young that fledged last year though in answer to your question.
Definitely more than one cause for the declines. Definitely a lot less swallows this year. I don't think any of the four hirundines we get in UK are going to do anything but continue declining as there are no easy fixes, and some of them are politically incorrect. Humans are ultimately the cause of all these declines though. Re swallows, I got the impression they weren't that numerous last Autumn either, but they haven't been about in large numbers here anyway during the last 7 years. I do know a number of former breeding sites that have become 'out of bounds'. I think netting is a huge issue, but we also need to tackle issues closer to home. Very difficult when people are even posting online their intolerance of nests on their properties.
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