Written by Dick
In 2011 and 2012 we played attraction calls using a bird scarer programmed with Swift calls. The sound quality was not great and, in 2012 particularly, proved to be quite unreliable. However, in both years, we had Swifts circling the tower and sometimes approaching quite close to the boxes.
In 2013 we progressed to having Swifts making contact with the boxes, sometimes clinging on, but still failng to find the entrances. They seemed to be focused on trying to get into the horizontal gaps between the boxes, where there was no way in. 2 pairs of Starlings also occupied boxes in the tower, probably because the entrance sizes had crept above 30mm.
|The back of the tower, showing some boxes |
extending beyond the box below
We have succeeded in making this enhancement in 9 boxes so far, increasing accommodation for Swifts to 97 boxes, without affecting the appearance of the tower at all. We hope these new entrances are similar to what Swifts are accustomed to in natural sites. A nest concave was placed in all of these new boxes.
You can see the current assignment of the nest boxes here.
The project team was:
Guy Belcher, Clarke Brunt, Alan Clarke, Bill Murrells, Dick Newell and Bob Tonks