Friday, July 20, 2012

They're Back - Chimney Swifts

Last summer we had a strange chimney swift incident at the cottage. In short, a pair of chimney swifts had built a nest in our chimney, as chimney swifts are known to do. Unable to perch, these birds spend their days flying through the air, eating pesky bugs as they go. They only rest when they cling to vertical surfaces, such as chimneys. Chimney swift nests are made of twigs glued with spit to the edge of the bricks. Last summer, a nest fell the entire length of our chimney to the very base of our fireplace, with only a thin wooden fireplace guard separating the babies from actually being in our cottage.
Fortunately, the dutiful parents tended to their babes the entire summer. Round the clock, they noisily swooped down the chimney, fed the birds and then exited again.
A few weeks ago, I smugly posted that the chimney swifts must have built a stronger nest this year. We could hear them, but only faintly since they were way up in the chimney.
I spoke too soon. A few mornings ago we heard a familiar sound and peeked into the fireplace to confirm our suspicions. Three eensy little chimney swift babies. Here's one little guy in part of the fallen nest.
I'm hopeful that mama and papa are as attentive this year as they were last. But, what do I do in the future? Should I put a guard on the top of my chimney so they can't build a nest again? I hesitate  because these birds eat so many mosquitoes and gnats and have few places left to nest. What would you do?


Cheryl M said...

Nice neat blog! I don't know what I'd do about the swallows. We have the same situation with the Robins that insist on building their nest in our backyard and then the dogs get after the babies.

Marilyn said...

How adorable. I don't know if I'd want them in my chimney though. I meant to tell you I like your header. It's very unique and looks like an old postcard.

Michelle said...

I didn't know chimney swifts made such good parents. Flying down to feed their babies shows a lot of devotion. I'm not sure what I'd's such an odd, but interesting, situation.

geetlee said...

Oh no! It's kinda sweet to see the little swift babies but it must be annoying with the noise.
I've never had to deal with something like this so I have nothing to offer.
I hope you are able to resolve this soon