The Western Wall Swift nesting colony are in their morning ritual flight. They just fly above the heads of the praying crowds and in front of their good old nesting site. The video was taken from the top part of the Mugrabi Gateway leading up to the Temple Mount.
Seoirse Swanton at the BT Young Scientist Exhibition in Dublin
Well done to Seoirse Swanton, representing Sancta Maria College Louisburg, who is presenting his research on GMIT Mayo swifts at the BT Young Scientist exhibition. Swift Conservation Ireland Green-Campus.
The Swifts are back in Israel!
Click on the link to see live streaming of nesting swifts in Israel. http://server1.reali-tech.com/livestreamflash/Demo/teva/amnon.html
Swifts in Thailand
There was a program on BBC 4 recently which highlighted farming swiftlet nests. It’s an amazingly successful conservation programme which is benefitting the birds by giving them exclusive buildings to nest in and giving the farmers a sustainable harvest. Here is a link to a blog about the Thailand conservation efforts http://swiftlet-ranching-thailand.blogspot.ie.
La Alhambra (Granada – Spain)
Ulrich Tigges showed me the following link about a project to protect common swift and monument of La Alhambra (Granada – Spain)
Over 150 pairs of common swifts breed using the hollows sculpted in arcs of patios of la Alhambra. Those estructures are named “Yeserías” and are very delicates because they are sculpted in gypsum, a very soft material. The hard nails of swifts damage the “yeserías”, an heritage to be preserved. Other birds present are house sparrow and spotless starling.
The objective is that the colony of swifts move gradually to other nesting sites in La Alhambra. Biology of swifts is being studying also.
They are progressively placing protections to prevent the swifts nest in “Yeserías”.
At the same time they are creating suitables nesting places by reducing holes in other walls of La Alhambra and Carlos V Palace (95 in 2015). Also, 60 nest boxes have been placed there.
It’s a very interesting work that compatibilizes protection of a World Heritage and permanence of a common swift colony
Jesús Solana (Mérida – SW Spain)
Article in Saturday 4 February 2016 Telegraph featuring Tanya and Edmund Hoare’s built in swift nest boxes at their home in Cumbria, England.