Dr Swift went up on the Wagner roof yesterday and drove down to Olympia to get our new inside chimney cam. He goes up on the Wag roof again today and if we are really lucky we will be live streaming with Infrared (so we can see inside where it’s dark) before the week is over.
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Great news! Cindy Easterson welcomed 618 Vaux’s Swifts to our retrofitted, crow proofed, live streaming, five star accommodations at Frank Wagner. Not that anyone for one moment was ever doubting their return, but it’s great to see them.
The Vaux’s Swifts are on the way! We have had sightings in California already, and into Oregon…and the first swift was counted going into the chimney at Frank Wagner Elementary School in Monroe on Wednesday evening, April 18! We hope this single swift has more company very soon. Welcome back!
Calling all counters (and wannabe counters)!
The intrepid counters at Frank Wagner started their spring migration count on Sunday, April 15th. If you can help out, please contact us at contact@MonroeSwifts.org.
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See below for an account of counting the swifts at the defunct chimney stack at the Old Northern State Hospital grounds in Sedro-Woolley. Gives you a sense of how dramatic the swift roosting experience can be…
Tonight (9/27) was both one of the most boring, and, the most exciting at the stack. I started at 5:05 pm. Fewer than 20 swifts entered the stack by 6:55 pm (i.e., almost 2 hours later!), although many were swirling around and making false passes at the stack the whole time. Then in the next 8 minutes at least 6,150 went in. They were going too fast to count very well. No hesitation, no breaks, just a solid “tube” of birds. Then a Merlin kept the remaining group high for three minutes, and grabbed a swift at 7:06. It took the swifts three minutes after that to come back down to the stack, and they wasted NO time getting in. They mostly went in in rapid “clumps” of 1-200, until the last 3,200 went in in less than 4 minutes!
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