Famed swallows of Capistrano nest in country club

CHINO HILLS — The migratory birds that annually return to the Mission San Juan Capistrano flew right past it this spring, choosing to make their nests at a five-star country club in Chino Hills instead.

For decades, a flock of thousands of cliff swallows returned to the church after their annual migration to Argentina, delighting locals and tourists.

This year, thousands of the small birds have built their mud nests in the eaves of the new Vellano Country Club, a year-old private community of 200 homes situated around a golf course.

Mission officials say the church attracted birds when it was the tallest structure in the area, but increased urbanization has led the birds elsewhere.


Information from: The Orange County Register, http://www.ocregister.com

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.