Home Forums Bird & Insect Sightings Freehold swifts

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  • eddybayton
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      Post count: 144

      Numbers of non-breeding birds appear to be dropping now with just 17 birds recorded last night between 8.30pm and 9.15pm. nests still being visited so I’d guess we are mid fledging. All aerial activity seemed to have ceased at 9.30pm as the local bats emerged. A clear sunset and cool temperature made it feel quite Autumnal. Prior to last Thurs and Fri rain, displays early morning and at sunset peaked around 40-45 birds. Worth a countup on a clear evening about 8.45pm, earlier if overcast.

      eddybayton
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        Post count: 144

        Again, 17 birds, 9 to roof height and 8 not descending below about 500 feet then screaming in a trail to disappear upwards. Perfect weather for observation. Some stil active at 9.20pm as I type….

        eddybayton
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          Post count: 144

          …and tonight a maximum of 29 birds at 8.45pm. Are the additions fledged birds or returning to natal site non-breeders? No idea but numbers up again. I favour the idea that fledged youngsters hang around for a few days if the weather is comfortable…..

          eddybayton
          Participant
            Post count: 144

            Maximum of 15 birds tonight around E Freehold, activity dying at 21.20pm. Two other observations of note. House martins investigating nest sites under the eaves next door, not unusual at any time during their stay but always driven off by swifts if they attempt to settle. Also two large buzzards over central Lancaster at 5pm associated with a ‘tiny’ male sparrowhawk that gave all the gulls on the river and an early gathering of ‘balling’ starling something to make a fuss about.

            eddybayton
            Participant
              Post count: 144

              12 birds last night around 8pm under blustery overcast skies…

              eddybayton
              Participant
                Post count: 144

                Mon 9th August. Overcast, high cloud. Dry. Still. 27 swifts screaming around at 8.10pm. Appearing to be two groups/colonies separating then rejoining.

                Steve Graham
                Participant
                  Post count: 105

                  Interesting behaviour this morning between 08:30-08:50 at Meadow View, Brookhouse SD541 642.

                  Had 50 Swifts, 20+10+20 screaming and feeding all heading N.

                  Regards
                  Steve

                  eddybayton
                  Participant
                    Post count: 144

                    I’ve not seen any swifts around the houses from dawn until late evening. Last night a bunch of 13 dropped out of the sky to scream about from 8.20pm onwards but maintaining a height of about 150 feet or more. Only 4 dropped down to eaves height around 9.05pm. The rest had disappeared. not seen a single one today but some will appear before sunset.

                    eddybayton
                    Participant
                      Post count: 144

                      No birds all day until 8.15pm when the rain band passed over. Clear blue sky after sunset and up to 9 birds screaming together at 21.05pm

                      Steve Graham
                      Participant
                        Post count: 105

                        Had around 10 birds screaming over Halton on the evening of 10/8.

                        Unusual for me as I see very few birds,particularly inland, after 1 Aug normally. Then again what is normal anymore!

                        Regards
                        Steve

                        eddybayton
                        Participant
                          Post count: 144

                          If they are local to you, you will encounter them in the hour around sunset now unless there is a late nest.

                          eddybayton
                          Participant
                            Post count: 144

                            18 swifts over freehold on Saturday night around 7.30 in very overcast conditions. Just 6 on Sunday 15th August as late as 8.40pm in partial cloud and a visible sunset.

                            johnbromley
                            Participant
                              Post count: 144

                              At least 16 Swifts feeding over far foreshore opposite Arnside yesterday

                              eddybayton
                              Participant
                                Post count: 144

                                Up to 12 swifts over Freehold from 7pm to as late as 8.50pm … overcast. They remained high most of the time with only 4 descending to about 100 ft

                                Knottender
                                Participant
                                  Post count: 172

                                  37 Swifts, in 4 separate flocks, all South, over Bank End this morning.

                                  Andrew

                                  eddybayton
                                  Participant
                                    Post count: 144

                                    13 swifts over Freehold circling between 7pm and 8pm, 4 lower but none anywhere near rooftop level. Mostly on the edge of visibility and just audible to locate. Sky overcast but dry.

                                    eddybayton
                                    Participant
                                      Post count: 144

                                      A continuing and rather baffling saga. 6 birds in drizzle last night then unusually 9 birds between 6am and 8am this morning in overcast skies definitely not on a migratory journey but just blogging/feeding with perhaps 1 or 2 nest visiting though this is tricky to confirm. This evening 5 birds to rooftop level and 6 more not descending from height.

                                      andrewmccafferty
                                      Keymaster
                                        Post count: 60

                                        Eddy, I thought they’d completely gone until I just saw 5 this morning over Borrowdale Road (hadn’t been keeping up with your posts here!).

                                        It’s been a while since I’ve been around here in the summer: is this a normal date for them still to be around?

                                        eddybayton
                                        Participant
                                          Post count: 144

                                          It is on the late side by about a week so far. I assume this is because we had a very cold April and a very wet May. I’ve seen 6 or 7 birds this morning, Friday over Windermere/Derwent. They are the same as the ones you’ve recorded over Borrowdale. I have recorded nests attended in September but not for many years.

                                          eddybayton
                                          Participant
                                            Post count: 144

                                            And still 3 swifts low at rooftop level as late as 8.20pm in Freehold. These must be nest attenders as the overcast drizzly conditions don’t encourage the migrating bird. They pass through on on a committed Southerly direction at speed.

                                            eddybayton
                                            Participant
                                              Post count: 144

                                              No swifts Sat morning when I looked between 7am and 9am. Finished work after dark Saturday so no record. No swifts this morning, Sunday. Just one so far this evening favouring what looks to be an area over Borrowdale/Grasmere Road so there may be a nest in that area. Over the last hour it has descended to rooftop height then reappeared 200 or more feet up several times.

                                              eddybayton
                                              Participant
                                                Post count: 144

                                                No sightings Mon am or pm in perfect viewing conditions. None this morning Tuesday either. I would guess that’s about it for Freehold swifts this year but well worth looking out for migrants through.

                                                Quite a few swallows heading due south, a little egret for the shore, a buzzard over the city and a tit party through the gardens this morning.

                                                Steve Bullen
                                                Participant
                                                  Post count: 34

                                                  Single bird over Bowerham last night.
                                                  Steve

                                                  gwenda meredith
                                                  Participant
                                                    Post count: 1

                                                    As a long time former resident of Freehold, I am now in Burton in Losndale and have been keeping notes on the swifts in my eaves.I was keen to put up two swift boxes as well to offer summer homes when I moved here a few years ago. This year, 2021 .a family in the eaves have bred and departed much earlier but one pair in the swiftbox, sited under the eaves leave neat droppings on my doorstep so I have a clear record of their presence! Late nesters, the two adults have still been flying in ,getting gradually earlier each evening.Saturday 28 August it was 8.25 pm for the one adult and 8.30 for the other. The droppings incidentally under an eye glass revealed tiny 2mm long iridescent greenyblue insect cases.Beautiful.
                                                    I did not see them last evening and although I am going out with my scope to watch, think the family have left now. I was anxious as it was so late in the season so hope they make it all the way back to their sub Saharan winter area .
                                                    Gwenda Meredith

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