Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Fulbourn Swift Survey 2011

read more about the common swift on the rspb websiteAt the January meeting of Fulbourn Forum, Rob Mungovan, the SCDC Ecology Officer, gave a very interesting talk on the work that is being undertaken to try to maintain the swift colony during the re-development of the Windmill Estate. A survey in summer 2009 had confirmed 72 active nests, making this the largest swift colony in East Anglia. Rob reported that a similar survey in 2010 estimated that the number of nest sites had declined to 57. However, he found it very encouraging that apparent nesting activity had been recorded in two external and six internal nest boxes located within Phase 1a of the new Swifts Development. The developer had agreed to incorporate the internal boxes after it had been noted in previous years that the birds were reluctant to use some types of external nest box. A total of 75 internal and 50 external boxes have been provided in Phase 1 of the project.

Although this swift colony will continue to be monitored by professional ecologists during the re-development, we have little information on other colonies within Fulbourn. Fulbourn Forum is organising a team of volunteers to survey other areas of the village for swift nesting activity. If the birds are seen flying low on summer evenings along eaves and roofs and around houses, screaming as they go, then they are likely to be nesting in the near vicinity. The survey work will involve a few evening and/or early morning sessions during June and July to observe the behaviour of the birds in specific areas of the village, and no previous experience is necessary. If you would be interested in taking part then please email Fulbourn Forum for further information at
John Willis
Fulbourn Forum

Thanks to Amir Ben for the briliant pic of the swift! - Ed.

Read more:

View Rob Mungovan's presentation on Fulbourn's swift colony and plans for its future (followed by a presentation on Open Orchards)

Find out more about Fulbourn's swifts on the RSPB website

Access South Cambridgeshire District Council's Wildlife and Ecology Department

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