In August 2011, seventeen researchers from the University of Windsor set up fifty-one Tree Swallow nest boxes at the University's Pelee Enviornmental Research Centre at Leamington. The nest box grid will be an important resource for research and teaching as the University continues to develop new projects in Essex County. This page chronicles the day that the research team spent setting up the Tree Swallow nest box grid.

Dave Tremblay of the university's Technical Support Centre, together with his colleagues Steve Budinsky and Rob Dumouchelle, built the boxes according to the design recommended by the Golondrinas de las Americas project.

Kirsten, Dan, and Dennis plan where to put the fifty-one nest boxes at the University of Windsor Pelee Enviornmental Research Centre at Leamington.

Dennis and Dugan drive a post into the ground.

Dan and Brendan driving a post.

Kyle drives a post two feet into the ground. We mounted our boxes on eight-foot t-bar posts, each driven two feet deep. The boxes will sit at a height of six feet.

Sarah on the east shore of the lake at the Pelee Environmental Research Centre, marking locations for the boxes.

Tyne delivers the heavy steel poles to a ramming team.

Dennis rams a post into the ground.

Kara attaches a nest box to a post.

Katrina delivers predator cones to the nest box sites.

Sarah tightens the bolt holding the predator cone in place.

Brendan finishes attaching a nest box and predator cone.

Outstanding in their field, the University of Windsor team poses next to one of 51 Tree Swallow nest boxes. From left to right: Dr. Dan Mennill, Dugan Maynard, Kara-Anne Ward, Katrina Lukianchuk, Sarah Baldo, Brendan Graham, Chris Heath, Mackenzie Browning, Dr. Daniel Heath, Kyle Wellband, and Dr. Stéphanie Doucet. The team also included Dr. Dennis Higgs, Dr. Kirsten Poling, Dr. Trevor Pitcher, Kaitlyn Pitcher, Nancy Barkley, Paul Barkley, and Tyne Baker.

Nancy and Paul finish bolting a nest box.

Kara tightens the bolts on a Tree Swallow box.

One of 51 Tree Swallow nest boxes at the University of Windsor Pelee Enviornmental Research Centre at Leamington.

All of the boxes face south or east, which is the preferred orientation for Tree Swallows.

Sarah, Dan, and Mackenzie check the spacing of the boxes and mount a predator cone.

Daniel and Chris (team Coca Cola) pause from installing boxes on the north shore of the lake.

Kaitlyn, Trevor, and Nancy on the shore of the lake at the Pelee Environmental Research Centre.

Tyne and Brendan after a long day of setting up nest boxes.

Katrina and Dugan finish their last nest box for the day.

A line of Tree Swallow nest boxes spaced 30 m apart.

Dan poses between a Tree Swallow nest box and the Pelee Enviornmental Research Centre sign.

The view across the lake at the University of Windsor Pelee Environmental Research Centre at Leamington. The aquatic habitat will provide excellent foraging grounds for Tree Swallows as they begin to colonize the nest boxes in the coming years.

After a hard day's work, the team enjoys a meal at Leamington's Lakeside Cafe and Bakery.

A late lunch at the Lakeside Cafe and Bakery in Leamington.

We thank everyone who helped to set up the University of Windsor Tree Swallow Nest Box Grid.  We are deeply appreciative for the support of the Municipality of Leamington, who donated the property that is an integral part of the Pelee Enviornmental Research Centre. We thank the Office of Research Services and the Faculty of Science at University of Windsor for financial support. We thank Steve Budinsky, Dave Tremblay, and Rob Dumouchelle at the University of Windsor Technical Support Centre for building the boxes and predator guards. We thank Stéphanie Doucet who documented our day's work in photographs.  All photographs on this page are copyright Stéphanie Doucet and Dan Mennill and may only be used with permission (dmennillATuwindsorDOTca).

Back to top