Bank Swallow monitoring was done as a collaborative effort between California Department of Fish and Wildlife and Plumas Audubon Society in 2009, 2010, and 2012, and continued as a Plumas Audubon Board effort in 2017.
Julie Newman, a retired biologist with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and Plumas Audubon Society board member coordinated the Bank swallow surveys in Plumas County. Surveys were conducted along Spanish and Greenhorn Creeks in American Valley, Lights Creek, and Indian Creek in Indian and Genesee valleys. Surveys were conducted during breeding season, from April until July, throughout suitable habitat.
Our results indicate that there are at least six large Bank Swallow colonies in Plumas County and several other smaller colonies. The location and size of colonies varies from year to year, since their breeding habit in sandy, near-vertical banks along creeks and rivers is a dynamic system that is constantly changing.
Each year new colonies were found. Continuing survey effort will help elucidate trends in the distribution, population size, and trends of Bank Swallow nesting in Plumas County. Suitable habitat occurs in often overlooked areas, and more populations of Bank swallow are sure to be found in our region.