Leicestershire & Rutland Swift Partnership
If you see any Swifts this summer please record your sightings on NatureSpot. If you see/hear a party of Swifts 'screaming' then note this in the comments box. If a fledging is witnessed that would also be of interest.
Swifts are of particular interest because their numbers have fallen by about half in only 20 years and they are Amber listed as of conservation concern as a consequence. It has been estimated that we need to create 20,000 new Swift nest sites every year just to stabilise the population. Swifts are a quintessential part of our summers with their 'screaming' calls and dashing flight. They are with us for 12 weeks of the year spending our winters south of the equator. Swifts took to nesting in our houses in Roman times and are now dependent on our buildings which are increasingly becoming difficult for them as buildings are becoming better insulated.
The Swift Project Partnership* would be very grateful for any breeding records from Leicestershire & Rutland this summer.
Breeding records will be used in the preparation of an alert map which will be used by Planning Authorities to seek the inclusion of Swift Bricks in new developments within 250 metres of known breeding sites.
Breeding site evidence is usually established by seeing Swifts flying into cavities in buildings. Typically these will be birds seen going under the eaves, or gaps in soffits, of buildings but may also include going into Swift bricks, Swift nest boxes or other cavities. The Partnership is also interested in screaming parties as this indicates breeding sites nearby. A partnership member will visit sites of screaming parties to seek to establish the actual breeding site.
If you'd like to e-mail questions about the Swift Project Partnership please address to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Leicestershire & Rutland Swifts Facebook Page @lrswifts
Swift Awareness week is being held nationally from 22nd to 30th June. Information regarding events will be placed on http://actionforswifts.blogspot.co.uk/p/swift-events-diary.html
*The Swift Project Partnership is composed of Leicester City Council, Leicestershire County Council, Charnwood Borough Council, Leicestershire & Rutland Wildlife Trust, Leicestershire and Rutland Ornithological Society and the National Forest Company.