A Continent-wide Chimney Swift Roost Monitoring Project


Bastrop, TX

I visited the Bastrop State Park on the nite of 8-13-05. Temps were about 90 degrees and partly cloudy. A large concrete cistern at the intersection of park road 1A and 1C. Wow. What a thrill. I was thinking maybe fifty birds would be a lot. My count that nite was 600 plus birds. This was from 8:15 PM to 8:45 PM. I was overwhelmed by the number . Went back the next nite to watch instead of count. It's a hard location to get a good view. I wanted to get a good idea on where the best place to try for a recount. I went out on Wednesday nite to try again. Same time and conditions. 420 birds that nite. This seemed like a more accurate count to me. I went on Saturday with a friend and we both came up with 400 plus birds. It was like a tornado of birds. At it's peak you could feel the air moving from the birds. Air traffic controllers should study the swifts. Several wonderful nites. Looking forward to the up coming count.   Chris DuCharme

Gloucester, VA

I have participated the last few years, but this year was not able to make a count until August 17th, after the official dates for the counts. I hope the information will still be useful for you.

Roost site: downtown Gloucester, VA 23061; average size chimney (maybe 1.5 ft across opening) on an old warehouse building with no shown address, but approximately 6663 Main Street
# of birds: 77
Time (Eastern): 8:15 pm
Date: 8/17/2005
Weather: cool and clear
Dave Hewitt

Racine, WI

We've been enjoying watching the evening skies and seeing many swifts. As reported earlier we found a chimney being used as a roost in downtown. Now we have located another two chimneys with roost activity about 6 and 9 blocks north of the initial roost reported. The St. Patricks chimney has about 2 dz roosting and the Water Co. has about 100.

Helen Pugh

Lebanon, MO

I am an animal control officer for the City of Lebanon, MO. 65536. I had several calls of a vacant house in our city with a bunches of bats. Tonight 08/23/2005 myself, the Capt. of the Police Dept., and several curious onlookers & a Sgt. got there a while after the show started. All these swifts started entering the chimney, what a show. I have seen this one other time in the last 5-7 years. It was cloudy & cool, we had been having rain showers last couple of days. Just guessing we probably saw between 1,500 to 2,000 in the space of about 45 minutes. Happy to pass this info on to you. They have been in the area for about the last 4 or 5 days.

Joe Majerak, Sr.

Saint-Raymond, Quebec

I am the coordinator of the Chimney Swift survey program for the Quebec province and a work collegue of Mark Dionne at the Canadian Wildlife Service in Quebec city.

On the week en of August 13-14 and 15 I have no precise data on swift. I was out there on the 15th in a rural area but still looking for a roosting site I have not found yet.

I have collected data myself on August 17 at an old roosting site we have on our list, here are the information if you are interested. At that time of the year in the province of Quebec there are usually not many swifts. I was then surprise to find that many swifts on that date. Still last night August 23 there were 40 swifts at another well known site I visited while in Quebec city they seem to have left earlier this week.

Number of swifts entering the chimney: 76
Observation time: 19:30 - 20:30
Date: August 17
Location: near Quebec city (60 km north-west) Longitude -71 degree 50' 3,857'' Latitude 46 degree 53' 25,789'' (NAD83)
City: Saint-Raymond
Province: Quebec, Canada
Description of the site: chimney of a retirement home
Weather condition: cloudy 10%, T 17 Celsius

CÚline Maurice

Vernonia, OR

Hi, I have found a natural roost in Easter Oregon. Here is the particulars.
8:00 pm pacific time till dusk.
20 Vaux Swifts.
Malheur National Forest
The roost site is a large pine tree which has broken off about 50 feet off the ground and must be hollow in the top. The tree is sitting in a meadow at a end of a short road on the North side of Chattanooga mountain. This area in general is a large burn that occurred about 10 years ago. There are probably more roosts in the area due to the large number of standing snags in the area. The burn is over 35,000 acres in size.

Dale Webb

Lowell, MA

Number of swifts counted = 150 entered
Time (and time zone) = 7:30 - 8:05 pm. Eastern
Date = August 24, 2005
Location = residential neighborhood built 1914

Address: city, state/province = Lowell, Massachusetts
Broad description of the site, e.g. school, warehouse, residence, Chimney Swift Tower, etc.
We observed 150 swifts enter our 35 foot brick chimney of our home.
They have been entering every night this week
Weather conditions may also be reported. = partly cloudy, 74 deg.

Cleveland, OH

Western Cuyahoga Audubon Society held a chimney swift roost watch on August 14, 2005 from about 8:00 pm to 9:15 pm. We saw 287 swifts go into an old school chimney at 323 Bagley Rd., Berea, OH 44017. The weather was gorgeous. About 70░ and a slight breeze. Fourteen people showed up to watch the swifts.

We have pictures and a complete report on our website at:

Mary Anne Romito

Staunton, VA

Last night the first C.Swift entered at 8:00 p.m and the last entered at 8:23 p.m. 3019 Swifts filled the chimney.

Tonight I was able to arrive just in time to visit and enjoy so very much the company of three wonderful ladies. Mary V, Lexa M, and Melissa Druff .  We counted the first in at 8:09 and the last at 8:20 p.m. The total count for this Thursday evening was 3305.

I could not resist going tonight to check on the Chimney Swift migration.  The same chimney and the count was stupendous. The first bird in at 7:41 and last one in at 8:12 p.m. The count was 6,540 Chimney Swift. That was fantastic and I loved every second of it.

I want to check out other locations such as 927 West Beverley Street if I can find a suitable place to park and maybe East Beverley Street (lots of good old chimneys) and St. Francis Church. I will keep you informed of any results.

Jo King