Saturday 30 June 2018

Still just got the two pairs with young swiftlets, although we have had some prospectors to boxes 2 and 5 but these haven't roosted as yet. Here are some videos taken yesterday evening at dusk as the parent birds came back for the night. Box 1 parents feeding the youngsters:

And Box 3 parents feeding their youngsters - the second parent comes in part way through the video to help out with the feeding...notice the difference in size between the two sets of swiftlets!

Wednesday 27 June 2018

I've been away for a week, but it's all been happening whilst I've been away. Box 1 eggs hatched out, a few days later than we thought they would but they got there in the end, it looks like there are two young swiftlets in there in this video:

Meanwhile, the youngsters in box 3 seem to have doubled in size almost, and we see that there are now three in there and not the two that we supposed previously, so that's good news!

And yesterday we had a prospector in box 2 - it didn't stop the night but it's a start....

Sunday 17 June 2018

Our visit from Dick Newell with the Swift Workshop people from the visitor centre went well - I think they were impressed with our two breeding pairs on view on the monitor in our living room - a bit of a squeeze with 17 people! Or at least one half of our breeding pairs was seen, as the two partners were out on the hunt at the time. An egg was spotted just before the visitors left as one of the birds shifted slightly. We estimate that box 3 have been incubating for just about 19 days today, so we hope to be seeing chicks very soon. Stop Press: we now have two swiftlets in box 3, video below:

Friday 15 June 2018

Not much has happened since my last post, we still have just the two pairs in box 1 and box 3, both are sitting on eggs. We have worked out that the first ones should be due to hatch around about the 18th July. Sadly too late for the impending visit from swift expert Dick Newell who is giving a talk on swifts at Cley NWT Visitor Centre, followed by a guided walk tomorrow to look at local swift nesting sites - our swift monitor is on the route. I was hoping that we might have at least some first year birds inspecting our boxes in anticipation for next year but this hasn't happened yet, in fact we are seeing very few swifts at all apart from our own. So we shan't have much to show our visitors but hopefully they'll be impressed with our breeding pairs!

Tuesday 5 June 2018

Roosting last night was the same again, two in box 1, two in box 3, none in box 2. Box 1 have laid a second egg this morning and the first one has also remained in the nest.

This photo taken this morning after both parents had gone out - hopefully they'll be back at some stage to incubate!

Monday 4 June 2018

Roosting last night were two in box 1, two in box 3 and none in box 2, although two swifts were briefly in box 2 during the day. Box 3 are still sitting on egg(s). So we still only have two resident pairs so far as opposed to the three we had last year. We decided to move the abandoned egg in box 1 back into the nest whilst they were out, which we had to repeat again later on, and they appeared to be sitting on it last night so we shall see if it ends up in the corner of the box again today!...

An update - box 1 pair have laid another egg and the first egg is still in the're supposed to actually sit ON it though, not next to it. (It's behind the CH01 lettering...the second egg is underneath the bird)

See? Like box 3 does it please! We've still been unable to see how many eggs box 3 have as one of them is always sitting tight like this.

Hopefully box 1 have got the message by now!

Saturday 2 June 2018

Last night's roost was much the same - it seems we still only have the two pairs, one pair in box 1 and one pair in box 3. Box 3 are sitting on egg(s) but not sure how many as we've only been able to catch a glimpse of one so far, and this afternoon I noticed that box 1 have also laid an egg. But it is in the corner, out of the nest and the parents have been out all day. This suggests that they are new first-time breeders and are behaving much as the pair in that box last year did, so there's not much hope there for this year at least - perhaps they'll get it right next year....below a picture of the lonely egg in the back right hand corner of the box.