A Continent-wide Chimney Swift Roost Monitoring Project


Berea, OH

I watched this weekend and found the following in Berea, Ohio. The numbers were much lower than last year.

Little Red School House, 323 Bagley Rd, just before the Middleburg Hts line: Sat 8/12/06 from 8:15 - 9:05 pm total of 85 swifts entered the chimney.  Last year Western Cuyahoga Audubon did a field trip here and saw 300 on Aug 14, 2005. See the report and photos for last year here:


Downtown Berea near the Front Street triangle. Sunday 8/13/06 from 8:00 - 8:55pm: Berea Cafe building, now an art gallery, one chimney swift, early Aug last year I think there were about 50.

Huntington Bank building: 15. Four years ago we had at least 400 in here. 

Kulas Building, Baldwin Wallace College none, three years ago I think there were 200/300 hundred here. They were doing construction on the roof then, but I don't think they closed the chimney.  Peace,
Terri Martincic

Kenduskeag, ME

Last night, Aug. 12, a beautiful, clear, and quite cool (60 degrees) evening, we sat out watching our unused chimney from 7 - 8:15 PM. There were 9 swifts catching bugs and "sky-skating" around our neighborhood. We observed 8 of the 9 birds drop into our chimney, beginning at about 7:10. They dropped in singlely or by twos or threes, at intervals. The last bird came streaking in, probably 10 minutes after the others, as we were folding up our chairs, because there were only bats around us. Everything else had disappeared. The sun set about 7:45 PM. We wondered where # 9 was! Two nights before -- Aug. 10, I counted 16 swifts in the neighborhood. We'll let you know when our swifts head south -- always a sad day for us. We'll look for the results on your web site. Thank you! 
Mary & Chas Dorchester

Richland Center, WI

Hello, We went to count swifts in Richland Center, Wisconsin, this evening, August 13, from 7:44 to 8:30 p.m. CDT. We checked all the usual possible chimneys, and found no chimney with swifts going down. We saw about 15 chimney swifts flying around town. Temperature 75 deg.F, cloudy, occasional sprinkles, wind SSE about 10 mph. 
Barbara Duerksen and Stein Goering

Galena and Delaware, OH

Friday, August 11, 2006, I watched the two-story chimney at the Galena United Methodist Church at 109 Harrison Street in Galena, Delaware County, Ohio. The brick chimney measures 78 inches by 48 inches on the outside. Under a clear sky with temperatures in the 70s, 1132 Chimney Swifts entered the chimney
from 2032 - 2107. Galena is a small town between the Little and Big Walnut Creeks which flow into the North end of Hoover Reservoir. Swifts are common over the lake and its forested shore. This roost is one of the largest in Central Ohio.

Saturday, August 12, 2006, I watched nine swifts enter two roosts at the Natural Guard Armory at 79 West William Street in Delaware, Ohio. This roost was not very active on this clear night with temperatures in the 70s. In past years, the birds have used the air intake shaft or the chimney or both. This evening they used both. Other swifts were in the air as well as Night Hawks that were migrating. There are other roosts in downtown Delaware. I will try to identify them in the near future.

Sunday, August 12, 2006, Following a lead from a citizen that told me of swifts using a chimney at the local hospital, I finally located the roost at Grady Memorial Hospital at 562 West Central Ave in Delaware, Ohio. I found a vantage point in a shopping center parking lot, and from my car, I used my spotting scope set at its lowest power (15x) and window mount to watch the five(?) story high (round) chimney from a distance of 700 feet. (I checked the distance on a map.) Birds were already entering the chimney when I discovered the roost, but between 2027 and 2051, more than 47 swifts entered the chimney. The temperature was 76-degrees under a clear sky. I was surprised that no one called the police as several folks slowed their cars -- I could hear them. In the future, I will visit the hospital lobby and let them know what I
am doing so I can use their property. Viewing will have to be done at the back of the hospital since the chimney is mostly hidden from the street.  Swift on, 
Dick Tuttle

Morehead City, NC

Approximately 400 swifts counted at appproximately 8:25 PM, EST 8/13 at West Carteret High School, Morehead City, right on the coast of NC. A large unused chimney has been used for years for a roost. The weather was clear and 73 degrees.

This has been a mysterious year for chimney swifts, in that few have been seen. However, something went right because the count last night at Arthur Edwards School in Havelock was good and also tonight at West Carteret High School. No swifts were taken in for rehab this year by me, nor Ellen Westermann at Wild ARC in New Bern. There were days when we had several hours of torrential downpours, which we thought would have broken down some nests. The weather had been good overall, with lots of humidity and lots of flying insects. The purple martins have also enjoyed this bonus. Feel like these counts are promising. There has been lots of new construction of homes with no chimneys, and consequently, lots of habitat destruction. Morehead City and Havelock are 20 miles apart.
Douglass Swanson

Middleton, NS

Hello Chaetura fans,
Since I haven't seen any recent reports (last ones were from Wolfville 18 July and Middleton Aug. 3, both by Jim Wolford) and since this was the weekend designated by the folks at www.chimneyswifts.org for counting in August, I decided to check out the Middleton Regional High School - the only major roost known in the central part of the Annapolis Valley.

On August 12, I went down there and watched from 20:30 to 21:15 without seeing a single bird. I feared that they ahd already left, given the reports of early migrants in other species, but the temperature was only about 12 degrees C., and it had rained an hour earlier, so I thought that they might just have gone to bed early - not many insects moving anyway.

So I tried again this evening (Aug. 13) from 20:15 to 21:07, when the conditions were better (temperature about 18 degrees). Sure enough, one swift entered early (at 20:22) and the main group of 49 went in between 20:33 and 20:40; another nine straggled in, the last one at 20:53, for a total of 59. A far cry from previous years' numbers, but at least a few survived Wanda and probably increased their numbers over the summer. Claire Diggins also observed last Sunday (Aug. 6), when I arrived late (about 20:45) and saw only 27 swifts enter, and I believe she had over 60.

The only other location where I have found the species in this area is at Inglisville, Annapolis Co., where I have seen 2 birds on two occasions, most recently the evening of Aug. 9. Although this is in one of my B. B. Atlas squares, I have been unable so far to tell where they are nesting or roosting.
Hope to see some more reports for N. S., Cheers, 
Wayne Neily

Georgetown, IN

About 850 Chimney Swifts were observed entering the large chimney of the Georgetown Elementary School in Georgetown Indiana. This was on the 12th and happened mostly from about 8:55 to 9:05 pm Eastern Daylight Savings. 
Bob and Judy Van Hoff

Joplin, MO

Chimney Swift migration picked up real well at the Joplin North Middle School this evening.
From 8:07 pm thru 8:34 pm we counted 440 swifts go to roost. 

Fort Walton Beach, FL

Hello, fellow Swift Night Out-ers! Location: Residential home chimney in Ft. Walton Beach, FL Time: 7:15-8:00pm CDT Aug. 11-- 0 (zero) Aug. 13-- 1 We were very surprised by this count, since in past years, we have had many more birds this time of year. I did see several fly around, but only one actually entered our chimney. Several weeks ago, we counted 22. And we did have at least one nest of babies raised in our chimney this summer. Aside....to the program directors.... It makes me wonder whether the birds somehow remember that for the last 2 years, we had horrendous hurricanes in late August and September, and they knew to get out of our area before then. I will be interested to see the results of our September count, as well as the results of neighboring communities. Thank you for all your work!
Robin and Bob Horne