[Ontbirds]Chimney Swift Monitoring Program

Elisabeth van Stam evanstam at bsc-eoc.org
Wed Jul 30 08:42:45 EDT 2008

In Canada, Chimney Swifts have declined by almost 50% over the past 20 years and, are now listed as a Threatened species. Very little is known about Chimney Swifts and, it is therefore difficult to identify the reason(s) for their rapid and alarming population decline. Decreases in suitable roosting /nesting habitat, a decline of insect availability, and an increase in unpredictable weather are among the several suspected reasons.

London, Ontario acts as a stronghold for Chimney Swifts, providing both nesting and roosting structures for this migratory species throughout the city. Bird Studies Canada has begun an exciting new partnership with the McIllwraith Naturalist Club to monitor numbers, behaviour and, movements of London's seasonal swift population. A main objective of this project is to develop a standardised Chimney Swift monitoring protocol that can then be made available to any other interested communities.

To make this project successful Bird Studies Canada is looking for volunteers to observe occupied and potential chimneys in the city of London. This project is an excellent opportunity to directly contribute to Chimney Swift conservation efforts and help develop a monitoring protocol.  Volunteers will be assigned a chimney and will ideally survey their site one evening per week (for approx. one hour) from mid-Aug to early October.

Although this project is focussing on the London area, we are also interested in documenting nest and roost sites from across Ontario, so please contact us if you know of these locations, or would like to monitor in communities other than London.

To participate, please contact:

Elisabeth van Stam
Species at Risk Biologist, Bird Studies Canada
Email:  evanstam at bsc-eoc.org <mailto:evanstam at bsc-eoc.org>
Tel:      888-448-2473 ext. 173.

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