Stormy Oaks Nature Conservancy, home of Wildbird Recovery, is committed to promoting conservation of Chimney Swifts. If you have a masonry chimney and would like to provide nesting habitat for Chimney Swifts, if you believe the noise if your chimney might be Swifts or find an adult bird in your house or babies in your fireplace, please contact Wildbird Recovery 724.898.1788 for help. We welcome the opportunity to educate the public about this species. For more information about the importance of swifts and building your own artificial nesting site, please visit the wonderful website and advocates of the chimney swift at www.chimneyswifts.org.
We are fortunate enough to have a scout do his Eagle Scout project at our facility. He built us an artificial tower for the swifts to use for nesting. During the summer of 2011, we had our first nesting pair of swifts!
Many people, upon seeing a quick, small blackish bird flying out of the fireplace and into the living room, think they are seeing a bat. Here are some facts about Chimney Swifts:
- Spend almost entire day flying
- Closely related to the Hummingbird
- Cannot perch on branches, only on vertical surfaces like the inside of a chimney
- Catch insects only while flying, their beaks don’t allow them to pick up the insects
- Swifts usually return to the same nesting site and reunite with the same mate from the previous year
- Use their sticky saliva to “glue” twigs together for the nest
- One to two additional Swifts (usually relatives) help the parents to care for young
- Dexter, R. W. “Sociality of Chimney Swifts (Chaetura pelagica) Nesting in a Colony, “North American Bird Bander. 17-2 (1992): 61-64