A Continent-wide Chimney Swift Roost Monitoring Project


Ellicott City, MD

Last night I visited the site where I recorded 800+ Chimney Swifts during the August weekend, and
400+ during the September weekend. They were a no-show last night.
Sun down was approximately 8 p.m. I arrived at 8:10, and two others preceded me there by a few
minutes. They saw some swifts about, but none went to roost. I saw none between 8:10 and 8:40,
when we called it a day. We'll try again in September.
Number of swifts counted - 0 (zero, none)
Time (and time zone) 8:10-8:40 p.m. EDT
Date August 14, 2005
Location Miller Brothers Chevrolet
Address: city, state/province - Chevrolet Drive, Ellicott City, MD 21042
Broad description of the site, e.g. school, warehouse, residence, Chimney Swift Tower, etc.
- large chimney that has hosted as many as 2,000 swifts on migration in the past.

Weather conditions may also be reported.
Hazy, some clouds, temperatures in the 80s, very humid, no wind.
I am unaware of any changes in the chimney. It does not appear to have
been altered or capped.
Kurt Schwarz
Conservation Chair
Howard County (MD) Bird Club

Lexington, SC

Friday, 8/12/2005 8:15 - 9:00 EST Lexington Intermediate School Hendrix Street Lexington, SC Weather was warm, muggy & overcast with storms in the area. 309 swifts counted - chimney seems filled to capacity. CWC has released 35 baby swifts here this season.

Sunday, 8/14/2005 8:00 - 9:00 EST Lexington County Historic Museum Fox Street Lexington, SC Weather was clear in the low 80's. There is a big cedar tree growing against one side of the chimney so the swifts had to be very acrobatic to get inside. Sometimes they missed and flew into the tree and had to recircle. There is also a small gap between the old house and the chimney and they sometimes flew in between and had to fly back out. 32 swifts counted.

On a sad note, the old downtown jailhouse with a large chimney was razed earlier this year. For the past 8 years, I have observed several thousand swifts entering that chimney in late September every year.

Memphis, TN

On 8/14/04 Virginia Reynolds and I counted 2,279 Chimney Swifts going into the tall chimney at Shelby Farms between 7:07 and 8:10 pm CDT. This is the same structure at which be counted 1667 last year during the September count. Carolyn Bullock

Ft. Walton Beach, FL

We have our results of August 2005 Swift Night Out. Date: Saturday, August 13, 2005 Location: Home chimney in Ft. Walton Beach, FL Count: **24 chimney swifts** (Sunday count was identical--24 birds) We counted a week ago or so and only had 12 birds, so I wonder if they are starting to congregate already? We are looking forward to the Sept. Swift Night Out. Thank you! Robin and Bob Horne

Palm Beach Gardens, FL
On Monday, August 8, at 7:20 p.m. EDT I counted 25 swifts feeding in one large group (the most I've seen together at one time) above our house. They were traveling south/southwest. Do not know where they roosted for the night. We stilll have parents feeding babies in our chimney as of tonight, 8/15/05.  Emalee Andre
P.S. I was able to put the two babies I was feeding back into the chimney in a home made nest fixed to a broomstick.

Orchard Park, NY

~ 40 - 50 chimney swifts
8:30 - 8:45 pm EDT
Aug 11, 2005 (overcast, calm, 70 F) and repeated August 15, 2005 (clear, calm, 65 F) Orchard Park Middle School 60 S. Lincoln Ave., Orchard Park, NY 14127 square brick chimney, probably 2 ft x 2 ft at the top,
4 or 5 stories high; have watched this site - which has had continuous activity - since 1984 (for NYS
Breeding Bird Atlas); I normally see only small groups, i.e. up to ~ 5, in flight around the village but never counted as they roosted and was surprised at the large number using this chimney.  Jean Miller

Wilmington, DE

I have been following a roost at Ursuline Academy in Wilmington Delaware, located at the corner of Franklin St. and Pennsylvania Avenue (Rt 52). I have a record from July as follows:

28 July - started noticing swifts about 7:30 over the reservoir. The numbers increased and the first birds entered the Ursuline chimney around 8 pm. 146 birds appeared to enter the chimney, but there were more overhead that went elsewhere. All was quiet by 8:35
The building is a 3 story convent with a small number of nuns, so presumably, it is not fully occupied. I have watched this roost for several years, and registered it with a site through William and Mary, that appears to longer be active.
I started watching August 12, 2005 at 8 pm EDT, and watched the chimney until 8:30 when it was getting quite dark. Zero swifts entered this roost. There were swifts flying and a few gathered near the chimney, but none entered it. That leads me to believe that the flock that was gathering there on July 28 has now moved South.   Wish my information was more exciting, but negative information is still useful, I hope.

Sally O'Byrne

Potsdam, N.Y

Estimated swift count at Clarkson Uniiversity's Alumni Gym bldg. chimney where on 8/13/05 I estimated 354 swifts entering the chimney about 8:15 PM EDT.in about a 15 minute timeframe. Clarkson is located in Potsdam, N.Y. 13699.  Dave Heidenreich

Morehead City, NC

West Carteret High School large brick chimney , approximately 60 swifts. Friday, 8/12/05, weather hot and clear. In the spring, this structure had hundreds and the noise was deafening. In this county, there has been the largest concentration of swifts throughout the spring and summer that I've seen in a long time. Weather has been extremely challenging - cold, long rainy days through May; many times swifts were observed flying low over vacant lots feeding, when insects were no more than twenty feet off the ground. And this structure, in the past has had many more swifts than this. Not discouraged and wonder if some had already left for larger staging areas. Douglass Swanson, Beaufort, NC

Havelock, NC

Arthur Edward School large brick chimney, approximately 300 plus swifts. Sunday 8/14/05, weather hot and clear. This site is approximately 20 miles NW of Morehead City and always has an abundance of swifts. Military town with old residences that have uncapped chimneys. This town loves its swifts and was one of the locations for the newspaper articles. Douglass Swanson, Beaufort, NC

Whitefish Bay, WI

I observed my local chimney swift roost (the Fox Bay Building in Whitefish Bay, WI, site code: US-WI-001 from SwiftWatch, Center for Conservation Biology, College of William and Mary) on Sunday evening. The results were so pitifully small, only 2 swifts entered the chimney in the 45 minutes that I sat and watched, I was reluctant to report in. However I reminded myself that in science even negative results are important I am reporting in with that total of two birds.   Hope everyone else did much better,
Judith Huf