Tian'anmen Square at 5 a.m.: Workout time for the Beijing swifts

The sky over the Zhengyang Gate at the central south of Tian'anmen Square in Beijing is quiet and peaceful, but just two weeks ago, hundreds of birds were hovering over the ancient building and singing loudly. These Beijing swifts have set off their journey to southern Africa, and they will come back again until next April.

Birds are most active at sunrise and sunset. To capture the rare moments, CGTN Nature filming crew waited at the Gate at 4:30 a.m., and some 30 minutes later, the dark sky gradually turned into a bright blue, and hundreds of birds came out from the eaves of the ancient building and did their morning workout. The newborn young birds were practicing flying skills and preparing for the coming long journey.

Stayed tuned for our new documentary series about the unknown natural world of Beijing. 

For more:

A young Beijing swift rescued at an ancient gatehouse

Beijing houses millions of people, does it leave any room for the Beijing swifts?

Welcome home, Beijing swifts

See you again, Beijing swifts

(Cover image a screenshot, video provided by CGTN Nature film crew)

(If you want to contribute and have specific expertise, please contact us at nature@cgtn.com.)