Many thanks to all of you who were out looking for Chimney Swifts this year!
During the August Swift Night Out, I received a few reports of small groups of swifts …Gina Blake reported on Aug 12 that she has had a family nesting with her since about 2001 and Susan Ferster reported on Aug 16 that she had a group of about 12 at her house. Here at my chimney we also had about 12-15 or so at that time. Knowing where the nesting chimneys are is important and as we look for the fall roosts so we’ll plot all of this information on a map to get a feel for where the swifts nest and then congregate for migration.
But back to the report….As the week went on we started to hear of some larger groups…. On Aug 19 Holly Flannery reported about 50 flying around the Lovettsville Community Center…..Holly’s report was the highest we had heard since we started looking a few years ago – so that was exciting!
Then….during the September Swift Night Out, we got the sighting we’ve been looking for….Phil Daley emailed….We found a roost!! I’ll paste it in here in his own words:
“Tonight, Tuesday, Sept16, I counted approx 250 Chimney Swifts entering two separate Chimneys on Foundrey Road in Lincoln. The major portion-about 150-175, entered the large Chimney near the back of ‘Breakthrough’-(in the old combined Elem/high school-Catherine Marshall Center) the smaller group-(50-75) entered one of the chimney’s across the street. Started to gather around 7:15 PM-most all in by 7:35.”
Phil and his wife Ellie went back to Foundry Rd the next night and the swifts were funneling into a couple of chimneys so it was hard to keep count.
Next year we’ll keep a watchful eye on this location and the one that Holly found to see if we can catch a sighting of this amazing funnel that the birds make as they drop into the roosts.
I have yet to get any decent photos of chimney swifts but if you’d like to see some nice shots, here’s a great link: http://www.concentric.net/~dwa/page51.html
And to learn more about the birds, visit here: http://www.chimneyswifts.org/