Chimney Swifts Came to Camp Nappy ....

chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)July 12, 2007

......again and again!

This started on May 24th of this year. Another visitor had arrived that afternoon but he did NOT stay for too long.

I've been busying myself and trying to catch up on work in the garden. After clearing the area that will be our veggie patch I went back to the patio to get the plants and hear an awful scream from inside the house! Did someone get out of the aviary and one of the cats caught him?

I went inside and saw that one of the cats had someone dark coloured in his mouth.

I thought Kramer was caught! Eeeeeeeeeeeekkkkkkkkk!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The cat went under the bed and I crawled under after him. He dropped the bird and I scooped up the poor little bird.

"Who the heck are you" I asked the sleek black bird? He's a very handsome Chimney Swift (Chaetura pelagica). I checked him over thoroughly and did not find even a scratch or a puncture wound on him. Nothing broken either! He has very tiny feet and was clinging to my finger and has very short legs. I released him in a flight area with some of our doves and he had no problem flying either!

I gave him a kiss on top of his head, apologized for making him so frightened and let him fly off to continue his business. I had no idea how he got in the house. We have two chimneys but there are glass door thingies in front of both and no gap would allow him into the house. No broken windows, no ripped window screens, no holes in the roof. I dunno!

He was a very pleasant fellow. They breed in the Eastern half of the USA from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. They spend all their daylight hours flying and catching insects. They don't even stop to drink water but swoop down and take a quick dip as they fly over a pond or stream. They winter in the upper Amazon basin!

Timing, as they say, IS everything. How lucky that I came back to the house in time to hear his distress. How nice of the cat to be gentle with his catch. I do know that the Swift made the rounds in the living room. There was a huge mess from the potted orchids and other plants that were knocked over. But soil and orchid mix can be vacuumed and everything straightened out. To mend a lovely swift would not have been so easy.

So that's how this started.

A few days later we were out of the house for about an hour and a half today and when we came home there was another Chimney Swift in the house. Sadly the bird was dead and laying in the kitchen. He must have died earlier as there was no interest in the deceased by the time we arrived. He was stiff and I saw he had feather mites too.

This bird had also been through the living room and there is a lot of clean up to do as far as plants being knocked over, soil spilled on the carpet and this bird was very poopy too. We searched all the possible entry ways for this wee bird ... fireplaces, vent fans, central air conditioning ducts / openings and we could not see how two birds had come into the house!

Since they are social birds we fear we may get more visitors. Mike already made a screen door to close off the living room / dining room from the rest of the house and the cats. Then he started working on making two screen doors for the basement to block off sections should someone be coming in through the furnace?!?!

No, it does not look very pretty. Well, pretty Hillbilly, but at least maybe we can avert future tragedy. We thought to screen all the vents but ... if someone gets trapped inside surely he will die. If he is able to get out and into our home at least he may have a better chance as the area where the cats can now wander has been cut in half or more. (Sorry kitties but this is an emergency!)

Through all this, our pet birds / inmates did not get the mites from the Swifts. There was plenty of vacuuming though.

Well, almost 24 hrs. after the second visit and no new arrivals in the house. We feel like we are living in a bird cage with all the screen doors! We tried to strategically place them to block off the potential entry way areas and keep those areas cat-free. But still, after crawling around the attic with a flashlight and everywhere else we have no idea how they got in!

We went outside and there are Chimney Swifts and Purple Martins everywhere. Living on the shores of Lake Erie we now have the annual invasion of the lake midges. They look like mosquitoes but have no mouth parts and have fuzzy antennae. There are swarms of them covering everything and at dusk they take to the skies and the humming created by their wings is easily heard. The Swifts and Martins happily feast on the flying insects. During the day the finches, sparrows, warblers, wrens and everyone else greedily feast on the steaks with wings.

We now know that we have Swifts in our larger chimney and the next door neighbour also has Swifts in their chimney as we saw several birds entering both. This is the first year that we have had Swifts making a home in our home. We have seen the Purple Martins each year but this is the first year we have seen Chimney Swifts.

Yet a THIRD Chimney Swift arrived in the house about a week later while my Brother-in-law and his family were here and we were gone celebrating our 23rd wedding anniversary. This happened at the same time as a baby mouse that Daisy had brought inside was being treated for her seizures and final hour.

It would appear that the Swifts come into the house through one of the AC vents in the kitchen. One of the cats caught this one but the bird was rescued alive but in shock. After some care and bird was placed in a carrier. There did not seem to be any injuries anywhere on the bird but he was very frightened. When he settled down and was not breathing so heavily he was force fed several times.

The following morning the bird was very alert and Nick did a test flight of the Swift in the aviary with the doves. (The Swifts have mites!) The Swift passed his flying test and was released. Nick said the bird flew up over the roof of the house and was immediately greeted by three other Swifts! They dropped down to greet their missing friend, circled the area and then rose as a group of four to continue their activities and swap stories.

I hope no Swifts have taken a wrong turn in the AC ducts. The one air conditioner vent in the house that cannot be closed seems the only point of entry possible. All the other sections of the house were blocked with the screen doors. So.... Initially there was a metal bird cage upside down (so the removed bottom covers the vent) suspended from the ceiling. Should there be another Swift ... the cage would protect the Swift from getting caught by one of the cats but also make it easy for us to see quickly and release unharmed. He/she could cling to the side and not harm the oh so important wings!

Nick found this website to help with caring for the Swift.

Then about a week later ... I could just cry! Well, truth be told, I did.

We left the house in the afternoon for about 2 hours and came home to a dead Swift on the kitchen floor. So much for our attempts at high security!

More than half the basement is blocked off with screens. The living room, dining room, aviary and one bedroom are blocked with screen. The vent where we thought the Swifts were gaining entry had a bird cage over it to prevent another bird from gaining free flight entry into the kitchen but allows them out of the vent so they can be seen and then released outside. There must have been enough of a wee gap to allow the swift to get out. :-(

Then a few days later, Yep! ANOTHER Chimney Swift!!!

This is the fifth time in about three weeks that a Chimney Swift has entered our home. A very happy ending to this short visit!

I was outside and taking down one of the feeders to relocate it. I wanted to fill it with seeds for the Goldfinches that have graced our garden with their song. As I was on the patio and just taking the feeder down I heard a strange noise. Hmmmmm! One of the cats was in the window looking out over the patio... I looked down and saw the dear sweet face of a Chimney Swift in a window from the basement.

Quickly I went inside and down the stairs. I had to climb up on the washing machine to get this most precious of guests. Unharmed! Not a feather out of place! No kitty cat intervention at all because the bird was safely in an area that Mike had blocked off with the quickly made screen doors.

WooooooooooooooHooooooooo! There are NO WORDS to express how happy I was that this little bird was 100% unharmed! I brought the bird upstairs and carried him/her outside. Of course I gave the bird a kiss on top of the head as I wished it well. The bird quickly flew off and joined other Swift friends that twittered above.

OK...... Now the mystery deepens. We had someone from a roofing company and then someone from an air conditioning company inspect our home inside and out after the fourth visit. We found where the Swifts may be entering the air conditioning system and duct work to gain access to the kitchen. That is where our four previous birds seemed to have entered.

We purposefully did not close the entrance in case there were chicks or someone else in the duct work. In October, after the Swifts have long gone for their Winter Amazon basin home, the entrance to the AC will be closed off.

This latest visitor *must* have entered through the furnace system. There is a nest in the larger of the two chimneys we have. The furnace duct work (or whatever the proper term may be) is connected to this chimney. If someone else should come through that duct work, at least they will enter a zone of safety because of the screen doors.

I am sooooooooooooooooooooooo happy this bird was 100% unharmed!

We will need to find out if the entrance to the furnace can be blocked somehow but still allow the Swifts to nest in our chimney next year if they choose to bless us with their presence again. The Swift score to this point was two killed and three released unharmed.

So very sorry the two perished! To have come all the way from Peru just to be killed by our cats in the kitchen is so very tragic. All part of the (crappy) cycle of life, eh?

After that, the project will be to thread the endoscope we have at home to look into the vent and down to the dryer.

LOL! We have many items at home for the medical needs of animals but never imagined that the endoscope would be used to look up the vent! We have used it to look at the crop and beyond of some gulls and check for fishing hooks or other items that were lodged in them but this was a first!

The Chimney Swift saga got even better. First the endoscopic exam of the clothes dryer showed there is no nest inside but we really *must* clean the vent because of the lint build up in there! Don't want any fire to start.

No new Swift rescues to report for a while. As I was outside watering flowers and watched the roof line of our home as I could hear the Swifts cruising by at top speed. There was a lot of activity in BOTH of our chimneys. One bird in another bird out then another bird in ... Woooooo Hoooooo! Looks like there is a pair of Swifts feeding chicks in both chimneys! The larger of our two chimneys actually had three birds going in and out. Perhaps they have a "helper" for their brood?

Next door has an active pair of Swifts busy with their chimney too.

I can't tell you how many times we went to the basement just to check if anyone was flying about. I spent much of the afternoon on the patio weeding and planting some more flowers with one eye on the basement window!

Then there was Chimney Swift Number Six. He dropped in for a brief visit ~*SIGH*~

I came home one afternoon to find a beautiful Chimney Swift in the kitchen. He/she was at the window over the sink and trying to get out through the glass. Our little orchids from Panama, Costa Rica, Ecuador and Peru were heavily damaged. The African Violets were in the sink but ... most importantly ... the dear little Swift is 100% OK!

Had he gone to another window there are cacti and I'm afraid he would have been injured! We were to be near 100F the following day and were thinking maybe it would be safe now to start the air conditioner. NOPE! This one appears to have come through the AC duct rather than the furnace. We purchased another fan instead of risking someone getting injured or chilled somehow in the duct system.

The funny thing was I came into the kitchen and crazy Daisy and four of our cats were laying on the floor in the kitchen. Two other cats were in other rooms snoozing. Even the cats seem to be no longer excited about a visitor dropping in on them! Daisy was bored too! Whowoulddathunkit?!?!?!?

I picked the Swift off the plants, made sure there were no injuries, gave him a kiss (or three) on his little head, thanked him for coming for a visit and I took him outside and off he flew ... twittering to the other Swifts above.

He was soooooo very calm while I handled him! Maybe he's a repeat offender? God speed little Chimney Swift!

Later that same day I was downstairs folding laundry and heard something odd. OK. Now what? The sound, a kind of scratching and fluttering is coming from the furnace. Mike opened up the furnace. Nothing. Opened the door to the incinerator. Nothing. Mike took apart the duct to the furnace and there he was! Swift Number 7!

So the little Swift was given the standard kiss on the head, thanked for visiting and sent on his way to tell his friends about the funhouse adventures. LOL! We now not only live with screen doors everywhere and no air conditioning but the duct to the furnace remains open in case Number 8 is on the way.

I have a photograph of the one Nick rescued but am unable to add it to my Photobucket collection. A ISP security issue.

Such is life at Camp Nappy.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
sheepco(MN z4)

NEVER a dull moment!

Sounds like the guys in the white coats won't have any trouble trapping you and Mikey when they come, what with all the screen doors and such, teehee!

Seriously, so glad you were able to rescue those you could. Bummer we build such inviting habitat only to unwittingly cause problems just by having a home.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2007 at 10:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

I *could* do with some dull moments but that is rare. The last time it was really boring Mike brought home the squirrel and Daisy swallowed the straight pin. LOL! That was, uh, fun!

We have NEVER seen the Chimney Swifts before this spring. I'm glad that only two of the seven perished. We don't hear baby birds chirping in the chimneys any more so they must have left. I don't know if they come back to the chimneys to roost at night.

Yeah ... the gents in the white coats. We send them greeting cards and exchange family photos once the restraints on the straight jackets are loosened, dontchaknow? Kinda got used to feeling like we live in a bird cage ourselves with all the screens. I'm thinkin' we'll be brave enough to take the screen doors down next month.

The Swifts *need* their wings to survive. If one was hurt here that likely would result in a death sentence. In the big scheme of things to have extra protection for them while they are in town is a small inconvenience for us. Well worth it though.

OMG! Their tiny toes clinging to my finger! Soooooo sweet! :-)

    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 8:31AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Geez, that's insane, Chicka!! So to speak....:D

We have a lot of what I think are Vaux's swifts down by the river and around the farm canals down the street. It's amazing to walk amongst them as they play chicken with our heads...and win. LOL They've never tried to get in our house, but they also tend to nest in trees and not chimneys.

I'm so glad you're looking out for the creatures who sometimes get lost. :) Oh, and say hi to nurse Ratched for me! I missed her at Christmas. :D


    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 10:48AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hi Chickadee, The last time we talked you only had six swifts now you have eight! Wow, im starting to think one has a crush on you from all the kisses and will risk the cats to see you again :-) Any more friendly flyers shown up? I was reading my mother your swift story and she just laughed and laughed and said that was the best laugh she had all day, and thinks you are just great to help them like you are doing. She also is an animal lover and has passed that on to me. We always had some kind of animal in our house. She had four children and of course we all wanted pets. My favorites were chickens. Every Easter she would let me get two chicks and they were always my best friends. When they got to big we would take them out to her fathers farm and let them run free and i always cried, but they were just the greatest pets except for the poopy :-) My grandfather told me they would not socialize with his country chickens because they thought they were better since they were from the city and they thought they were people! LOL------------bonnie

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 1:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Hi Bonnie! Hi Bonnie's Mom!

So glad you liked my tales of "normal" insanity. Actually we do have more Swifts. When we are in the living room and all is quiet, one can hear many tiny voices in the chimney. I thought the chicks were gone but apparently not. There are A LOT of wee voices so I would guestatame there are at least 4-5 Swift chicks. :-) No one new has come in for a kiss though. Well, not as of this posting. LOL!

When we lived on the island of St. Kitts we had two chickens. Mike thought he wanted to have a Peacock here until we went to a nursery that had Peafowl roaming around and he heard just how loud the boys can be. That cured him ... until he gets his next idea. :-)

Have a great day with your baby blues.


    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 2:59PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yes they can scream like someone is being murdered so i can understand why he changed his mind :-) I always knew when my chickies got older they would have to go to my grandpas farm. So one time they were getting their big feathers in and i pulled them out so mom would not see their big feathers and my little chickies passed out and i thought i had killed them ( mind you i was very little ) so i buried them. My mom was asking me were they were and i told her i didn't know and she went looking and found them in the dirt and rescued them. They were perfectly fine (minus a few feathers ) and alive they had just passed out from the pain and i thought i killed them. So glad she saved them and that taught her to watch me better. Now that im grown i would have felt so bad if they had died and soooo glad she rescued them :-) Maybe peacocks would scare the toxic one away, just a thought:-)-------bonnie

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 7:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Camp Nappy Chimney Swift Resort (otherwise known as CNCSR!)! I like it! And only Chickadee can relate the story so well - I do enjoy hearing your stories. We have swifts that circle around the yard every night, they are amazing birds, so quick and agile. They come flying over the tops of the trees, swoop down around the back of the house and around the corner of the garage without ruffling any leaves. But no nesters for me, maybe a good thing!

Bonnie, you had me giggling at your chickie story! I'm sure you were quite distressed at the time and I am glad that your Mom investigated but I can just imagine you trying to dig a hole to bury them. It's a good thing that Mom's always seem to know when somethings up.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 9:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yes Jeanner i was a naughty little rascal. Trying to pull the wool over mommy's eyes and it didnt work. My poor poor little chickens! I loved them so much and then i thought id killed them. It was horrible for me and them. Im so glad she rescued them :-) That was when they used to dye them different colors, one was purple and one was green. Chickadee did you ever have colored chicks for Easter?-------bonnie

    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 11:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
sleeplessinftwayne(z4-5 IND)

Oh, heaven help the chicks and children. Mother wouldn't get me any more Easter chicks or ducks after one duck imprinted on me and managed to climb into my pajama pocket one night. That didn't stop my playmate next door though. One year she got two chicks and named them Ricky and Lucy. Ricky died but Lucy was very healthy. It turned out that Lucy was really a Ricky but that is another story. That was also the year I got TWO pairs of moccasins with patterns of beads on them. In short order Lucy the rooster discovered my moccasins and the beads which she/he apparently thought were seeds and I could no longer go into the back yard unless I took off the shoes and carried them behind my back. Lucy soon uncovered that deception and the chase was on. I was very happy when Lucy crowed too early once too often and was banished to someone's farm. I got to wear my moccasins until the soles fell off. Sandy

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 8:35AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Ohh! The poor little chickies! LOL! Good that your Mom came to the rescue, Bonnie! I never had Easter chickies or ducks or bunnies. We always had / have kitties. Mike thinks we need a miniature donkey now. Uh huh! Sure we do! :-)

Hi Jean. Thanks. The Swifts were making sooooo much noise this morning I thought someone was caught by a cat or stuck somewhere. Thankfully the chickies just seemed to be protesting that breakfast was not being served quickly enough. LOL! I hear Swift chickies in the other chimney too this morning! WooooooHoooooooo! We are Swifty. We'll NEED to screen off the entrance to the furnace ducts from the chimney somehow once our guests have gone back home.

Strange... We heard chickies before and then it was quiet. We thought the chicks had fledged and were gone. Now there is mega activity again. They wouldn't have two broods in a season would they? Maybe we just didn't hear the chicks for a while because our timing was off? Hmmmmmmmmm.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 8:44AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Most birds (except for the larger birds - hawks, etc) have several broods per season. So yup, I'd say they liked the resort and stayed for a second go round! The second brood is typically smaller if the first brood was successful. And if you lived in the south, you could have a third brood!

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 9:31AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Thanks Jean! I thought they might only have one brood. I am sooooo happy they may have more. Helps to decrease the guilt a little over the death of the two Swifts here. :-(

Bonnie? Have you looked at the threads about Bird Sightings? There are several and sooooooooo many stunning photographs of many birds. Jean takes the loveliest photographs of her garden visitors! How droolable! LOL!

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 3:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks chickadeedeedee I will check them out! Are they here at ponds? I need to get a digital camera but im scared of new stuff and i know how to use film :-)--------What is a photo bucket? Someone has mentioned they got there photos from photo bucket and put them on here.

You do not need to feel guilty about the swifts! It is hard to protect unexpected guests when they come unannounced and you have done everything you can to save them now :-) But i know how you feel because my beloved naughty doggie killed a baby robin while i stood right there! It was over in a second :-( Hope you feel better about it soon, you sweet sweet person.--------bonnie

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 6:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Hi again. is a free online photo sharing site.

Most of my photographs are with a Leica 35 mm camera and I either scanned the print and stuck it in the computer or when the film is developed, you can ask for a digital CD to be made of your photographs. No digital is really needed but it helps skip a few steps. :-)

There are several Bird Sighting threads in the Ponds / Conversations area. Right where you are now but maybe look back through the other pages to find the numerous threads. Sooo many people take and post such nice pictures here. Look at Fairy-toadmother's threads about her vacation too! So many stories and fantastic pictures are throughout our little corner of GW. If you find Semper_Fi's thread ~Somewhere Over the Rainbow~ PLEASE have a box of tissues ready for the beautiful tribute he created for his beloved Troy. :*-(

Glad you found us. :-)

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 7:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Chickadeedeedee I am so glad i found you all too!! The other forum was not very nice to me and every body here seems so smart and funny and friendly. What a difference :-)... I love reading all of these posts but it is taking me a while. My son keeps taking my computer away!! I guess i need to get him one but something tells me he would still want mine. LOL..bonnie

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 10:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Bonnie, you are quite welcome here! We have a nice mixture of talents and interests here and the more the merrier, variety is the spice of life, and all that jazz! We do like pictures but those pictures painted by the written word are the best (for which I have no talent so I resort to the camera!)

Stick around, it really gets interesting in the winter :^)

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 10:31PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Stick around, it really gets interesting in the winter

lol! i am not touching that one!

thanks for the boost, chicka. i agree on the bird photos, but you will be there a very long, long time :) there are like 3 threads?

    Bookmark   July 17, 2007 at 11:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

..eight! Oh dear. That sounds sooooo impersonal. A Chimney Swift named, uh, Henry came for a visit early this morning. He was in the basement and safely enclosed within the area that Mike had screened off a month or so ago. He was clinging to the curtains and waiting for his kiss.

LOL! I got him off the curtains and told him he was a most handsome fellow! We came upstairs then I took some pictures of him although they did not come out very good. He got a kiss on top of his head and he was released out the front door.

I'm not sure but the Swift family may have fledged. It is *very* quiet in the chimneys today. Yesterday afternoon we were in the garden and looking over the house there were 26 Swifts circling around the property! Have you seen the old movies with the haunted houses and the bats all around? THAT is what our home looked like with the Swifts during the daytime! Eeeeekkk! LOL!

I hear the Swifts outside now. I'm not sure but I believe they would return to the chimney to roost at night. Letcha know when Isabella arrives for a visit.


    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 8:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Chickadee that does make sense that they would fledge now because the other day you were saying how loud they were and little tiny babies are quite but the older ones can be quite rowdy. Sounds like you had a rowdy swift coming out party! YAAAAAA babies can fly. Now you are going to have empty chimney syndrome. LOL. At least you got a goodbye kiss from a gorgeous baby :-)

I think i missed something. Who's Isabella? Is that to nosey? Sorry~~~~~bonnie :-)

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 10:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Hi Bonnie. LOL ... Empty chimney syndrome. Great! Now I'll have another issue to deal with! :-)

Isabella would be the name for the next Chimney Swift. Like naming the Hurricanes instead of an impersonal number assignment.

We are so not normal!

Glad that Chicklet seems to be doing better. Hope he gets stronger in his legs and feet. Bub, our Grackle had the riboflavin deficiency very badly. She wound up with arthritis and her one foot is permanently turned in. That's one reason I suggested the physical therapy for him. That saga continues.


    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 10:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Oh, I wanna see the pictures!!! Any bird picture is a GOOD picture to me!!

So when do we get to here about Bub .... and what about the junco???? More, more, we want more!

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 11:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oh i get it chicka ,duh, like hurricanes okay. It took me a minute. Well i really like your issues you have a very elegant way of dealing with them :-)

Yes im glad that Chicklet is getting "hoppy" and stretching its little (big) feet. I to think that is a great sign. Im so glad you cared and gave him good advice. I dont understand why some would be so hateful and tell him its hopeless. That's just mean. I once rescued and loved a starling and it was the smartest and sweetest bird i ever knew. It was feathered but still to small to be out of the nest and i didn't know what it was when i saved it. I feed it cricketts and bird grit you buy for pet birds. I called her Nina and she always followed me around outside and made all those funny noises that starlings make. A stray cat attacked and killed her a year later when she flew to a bush where i was. I felt responsible for her death because of her wanting to be near me. It was very sad. But im still glad i knew her soul and she mine. I really hope with my whole heart that his chicklet makes a full recovery and can be with its family. But i think it will remember him for taking care of it and i hope it doesn't get hurt by wanting to be near him. I hope he keeps us updated. He seems to be a very amazing fellow fixing his own arm and all. WOW--------bonnie

    Bookmark   July 24, 2007 at 12:04AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

OK .... Here's a really crummy picture of yesterday's guest

So very placid! I think they know they can't get any where with those long wings and no way to get lift from them plus the risk of damaging the wings.

Here's a better picture of our third (?) Swift that was saved by my Brother-in-law. He placed the bird on a ladder for the photo op prior to being released.

Oh Bonnie ... I'm so sorry Nina died! :*( It wasn't your fault. God wanted a speckled birdy to cheer Him that day. I'm sure she still is.

It is very frustrating sometimes when all you get is: Take it to a rehabber! Take it to a rehabber! You can't do it! Yet ... when someone who supposedly has been a rehabber longer than dirt has existed offers advice it is: Oh geez! You screwed up and it can't be undone! Sorry.

Like I said, there is no harm in trying unless you try to harm and destroy. But then I am a Troll, dontchaknow? LOL!

Yes, I hope Chicklet continues to improve. The person caring for him sure is trying.


    Bookmark   July 24, 2007 at 6:59AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Sorry Jean. I forgot to add ... Bub is doing very well. She likes grapes, watermelon and mealworms. But then, don't we all! LOL! Mr. Junco is fantastic! He's got at least 4 distinct calls and has regained his strength and is a flying machine once again. :-)

    Bookmark   July 24, 2007 at 7:10AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oh i love your swifts! They have a cool shape with such long wings, little pointy beak and pretty slanting eyes. Very sleek looking. And they were soooo good! Not like Mr. Cardinal who took off when given the opportunity. LOL. Glad you shared the photo Chicka it helps to see how big they really are and what they look like in real life.

I wonder if that woman really is a rehabber because she does not seem very kind and caring. It seems to me that she enjoys saying hurtful and discouraging things to people. Most people who love and help animals are very kind and caring people who would take the time to help because they love animals and want the best care for the animal. If she was a rehabber then im pretty sure her poor animals did not fair well with that kind of attitude toward care. Very sad.

I noticed several times she butted heads with me like i was an idiot or something but i just kept coming right back. And if you noticed she is also friends with the unwelcoming commity. Hmmmm maybe the same breed of people. Well diversity is the spice of life i guess but i wish she would stop giving such hurtful and bad advice. If she does care for animals and doesn't KNOW the correct answer to something then just dont say anything, right. No need to be mean to someone who is trying to help an animal in need. Give someone else a chance to help and encourage that person. Well i need to quit rattling on like that, it cant be good :-)-------------bonnie

    Bookmark   July 24, 2007 at 8:37AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Isabella. The ninth Chimney Swift we have had visit us this year. She is a fledgling as she is much smaller than the previous guests. This morning I was crawling under a table with flashlight in hand and trying to get her out from a space between the refrigerator and stove we have in the basement.

All I had intended to do was to go downstairs to get some clothes but while there I heard a fluttering. ~SIGH~

I brought her upstairs, cleaned off all the cobwebs she had collected and she graciously posed for some photographs. I took LOTS to make sure at least some were OK. I suspect she may be our last Swift of the season. It has been eight hours and no one new has arrived.

Any way ... after her photographs were taken, she was given a kiss on top of her little head and she flew off and other Swifts came to join her over the lake. God speed little Swift! Stay Safe! Hope to see you again next year!

Mike added: Tell ALL your friends!

LOL! I'm sure he will supply the crickets! :-)

So..... may I introduce to you our ninth Chimney Swift guest, Isabella:

Look at the length of those wings!

Soooo calm and sweet! :-)


Oh dear! I think the human children are much easier to deal with. At least they have not been crawling through the duct systems!

Well it has been about eight hours since Isabella was discovered and I have not found any one else. We'll keep checking to make sure no other Swifts are in the house. Ohhhhhhhh they are too precious to let them die in Ohio of all places! I showed the people at work the latest photographs from today and they laughed.

What? Another Swift!?!?

Last year was our Year of the Grackle. The year before was the Year of the Hummingbird. This was certainly the Year of the Chimney Swift. We are so honoured to have met them!


~Worry not that no one knows you. Seek to be worth knowing.~

    Bookmark   July 24, 2007 at 5:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oh Chickadee she is so pretty, and those wings are just sooooo long. What did you give her to make her so calm like that, hummm? ( I think Judah could use some :-) I think it was very nice of her to dust and clean your cobwebs for you :-)-----do you think she may come to my house and help out? I have heard they do windows. I need all the help i can get! LOL. She looks like a pointy jet ready for take off. Yes you have definitely been blessed with the swift magic this year. You are so lucky to have been the chosen one for the year. It is a rare honor to have beautiful little jets clean your house for you and help you garden your orchids dontcha know :-)----I wonder what next year will bring? Cant wait to find out! LOL. I love how you describe it all, its like we are there with you and you take good pictures too, better than i could. Wildlife is wonderful and it can make YOUR life wild. Keep smiling :-)------bonnie P.S. How are the hermit crabs doing. Did you get your ocean made for the babies?

    Bookmark   July 24, 2007 at 9:27PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Hi Bonnie.

All the Swifts have been very calm. I just held them and no struggle at all. Glad you like my stories. What will next year bring? I'm afraid to find out!

I was downstairs the other night I heard scratching. ??? I look up and there's Mama Opossum and three of the children scratching at the window.

No! Go Away! We are NOT taking in any more visitors!

We do have crabletts. :-) We're very crabby here. LOL!

Speaking of crabby, I see you have impressed the Unwelcoming Committee with your advice more than once!
How are your Grand-Chicks doing? No one seems to ask you about them. I hope they are OK.

Time to go downstairs and see if I have anything new to report.


    Bookmark   July 25, 2007 at 7:24AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Awwww, I don't blame all of the creatures for "flocking" to the Doolittles' house! It sounds VERY inviting. I hope next year isn't the Year of the Turkey, Mrs. D.! Yikes! LOL


    Bookmark   July 25, 2007 at 12:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jeanner(SW Ohio - Z6)

Those are great pictures C3D, thank you! Now I understand why they can't perch but must cling, look at the length of those wings! Such cuties, I can see why they get a kiss on the head.

The few times I have held a bird, I was amazed at how humbling it is. Such little things, just ounces of fluff and they can bring me to my knees in a second.

I know you didn't officially invite them and I'm sure it's getting old having to rescue them, but how fun to get to meet each one individually. And I love the naming scheme!

    Bookmark   July 25, 2007 at 1:19PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Brenda that is just what Chicka needs, a whole house full of turkeys! LOL. "Chickadeedeedee" will then be "gobble gobble gobble". HeeHee :-)---But i would rather have turkeys than turkey vultures. EEEEWWWWW :-0

Hi Chickadee, Its totally fine that they dont ask. They have been that way from the beginning toward me sooooo it is OK! :-) The new ones to the forum are sweethearts and have not been corrupted yet and they talk to me. But sometimes they ask stuff and no one will answer them (i think ) because they do talk to me soooooo there you go again. But i dont intend to leave so we will see what happens :-) Sorry ,im a very determined sort of person and dont give up easily.

Off the subject "again" what does ROLF mean or any version of that? I am new to all of this and i see that a lot but dont have a clue as to what that means. Or any of the other abbreviations either :-(---I know that sounds stupid and i am soooo sorry. I know that IMHO means in my honest opinion or in my opinion but some of the other is like secret codes or something. LOL. I know that means laugh out loud and i like that one a lot. Im usually laughing on here with you all, You are so funny and sweet :-)-- Im always wanting to learn and i may ask some of the STUPIDEST questions but please do forgive me in my ignorance. SO SORRY again ahead of time :-)

Im so glad you got little baby crabs, did they look like mites at first or what? I always had hermit crabs when i was little ( bless my poor mother ) and many other things to freak her out but she was sooo sweet about it. My son is really not interested in animals for some reason but i kind of wish he was. He likes dogs and cats, the end.
My little blue bird babies are doing good, i cant check anymore because they are getting to old and it scares them so i quit peeking :-( I miss them. I dont know what my bluebird parents were doing the first few days but i was not happy with them but they are great now.

I think if he would exercise his chick a little each day it would help him get stronger and like you said he really needs to check it over everyday because it might wear spots on its legs or feet from dragging them. Good point about the leaves juice seeping into the skin, i hope he listens to your advice. Because he just changed the leaves and the chick got weaker again so it may be the bedding he has it in. I really hope the chick makes it especially after all the work you and he have put toward it.
Well i better quit typing or this may be the longest one on here :-)~~~~~~~~~~~Bonnie

    Bookmark   July 25, 2007 at 1:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)


Year of the TURKEY? Year of the Turkey Vulture?!?!?!?

OMG! I better post this ~~~~>Swiftly 'cause I think we are moving, uhhh, tonight and no new address available!

The cats have found that the Swifts are ... Ho Hum.... YAWN! They have not even gotten up to see what the commotion is about with the last three Swifts! Crazy Daisy did not care about the last two! We are **delighted** to tiny bits with meeting each and every one of them! :-)

Glad the pics were not too horrid.

These are not stupid questions, dearest Bonnie. They just show you have a life outside of the all important Cyber World! :-)

ROFL? = Rolling on the floor laughing.

IMO = In my opinion

IMHO = In my ~humble~opinion.

Pretty much all of the Ponds / Conversation area IS ~off topic~ and very few nasty people. That's why I hang out here some of the time.

The Unwelcoming Committee I think is afraid of me. You are too nice! My motto is :Don't mess with me! I WILL take you down if you mess with me! Think they KNOW that! Insert evil smiley face here~~~>(x) :-)

I am 113% OK with that too. Hope they are not avoiding you because you dare to chat with me! I do not think that killing a Catbird chick is one of those legal things either. I don't think it is but have not responded to that round about subject. I was ohhhhh sooooo close to "outing" someone and posting their fateful quote of:"Isn't it fun? when she had responded to someone new who posted about killing sparrows with that exact post!

I was good. I didn't incite a new riot. Well... not yet ... LOL!

Good to hear that Braveheart and his family are doing well! I am not sure if Chicklet's story is legit but I give the fellow the benefit of the doubt as we muddle through the new issues they face. This problem makes my tiny Chickadee brain cell work sooooooooo early in the morning! LOL!

I do sincerely pray that little / big Chicklet survives and thrives! The person who is giving the care does seem genuinely concerned and is trying! It may not be the perfect outcome for the chick but they both did try their best!!!

No new Swifts inside today. I saw that the outer edge of the large chimney is very poopy. Good to know the kids are eating well.


    Bookmark   July 25, 2007 at 10:27PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hey ChickaDDD, I know what you mean about Chicklet's story. He sounds super natural or something. Sleeping on roof, resetting his own arm, Typhoon or something and his birthday. WOW. But like you said if it is true your are surely helping them and thats all that matters.
I must have missed it when the unwelcoming committee killed a catbird chick. That is awful!!! And it is not FUN to get rid of HOSP. I dont know why they would say that and it makes me sick. I cant believe they said it was fun, that is disgusting and shows how stupid they are. I hope you dont dislike ME for it but I have seen them with my own eyes terrorize my other birds and not just the cavity nesters, but i dont enjoy it. I just want to save my other birds. They were after Braveheart today when he and Scardycat would try to feed their babies AND they are building two nests in two of my boxes right now :-( When papa tries to bring food they jump him and fall to the ground. It is just pure harassment and today i noticed his right eye was closed up. I dont think it was the HOSP because he was fighting two mockers today too and they probably got fed up with him getting in the middle and decided to kick him around awhile. My blue is insane they are twice his size. But now he will be at risk of hawk attack because he cant see from that side. Ahhhhhhh SIGH. I am having such stress this year with the bluebirds. I love them and all the birds except the HOSP and it is hard on me because I worry so about the birds. My other little sparrows are building in my holly bush that the robins used three times this year ( they were busy ), you know the little ones that i keep blowing there little babies out of the bush. So at least i know where they are this time and wont blow them out. Birds are so funny. She fusses at me every time i go out there but then builds her nest right in my back steps. Go figure :-)

Why would they kill a catbird? I dont understand that, it must have been before i joined because i dont remember seeing it. Do you know what month and maybe i can go back and find that post. That is very disturbing, maybe they are just animal killers? Maybe they do enjoy it. They almost had me convinced that the house wrens were evil till Bet got on there. Maybe they kill all birds except bluebirds. That's sick :-(
Well im glad you didn't have any little jets get confused and end up in your house today :-) Maybe they realized that outside is where they belong. Hopefully for you and your families sake. All summer without air conditioning is a horrible thought for me. You are a very strong and sweet person to sacrifice your comfort for the little jets. I bet Daisy was hot too with all that hair. My Mary is very hairy like that ( 4 layers of fur ) and she doesn't even like to be outside in the summer. We are very spoiled. Im glad your kitties got bored with the swifts, i know you were blaming yourself for the deaths but you didn't know they were coming so im glad all is good now :-) I better go because this is long but i know i could talk a lot more!!! LOL. She who is to long winded~~~~~~~Bonnie

    Bookmark   July 26, 2007 at 12:23AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Sorry. That should have read cowbird not catbird. As far as I know one was not killed but the discussion was what to do if the egg in the bird box hatches and was a cowbird.

Glad that your little blue family is doing well. :-)

    Bookmark   July 26, 2007 at 1:42AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Chicka they shouldn't hurt a cowbird either. They have a posting now about a possible cowbird chick in a bluebird nest with three other eggs and i told them as long as all the chicks get food they should be fine. If it is a cowbird chick I hope they dont hurt it. I believe they all could be fed and raised if the parents are helped out with food. They should check to make sure the bluebird chicks are being fed and not smashed by the cowbird chick and help out with food and all should be okay IMO.
Thanks for clearing up the ROFL because i tried and tried to figure that out and i just couldn't get it.
My bluebird buddy just found her new male dead outside the bluebird box and they have four babies in there that are only a week old. We have no idea what could have done it because he looked fine. I told her it might be poison or something bit him when he was on the ground catching an insect. I feel really bad for her because this is the second male she has had this year and she was VERY close to the first male. Any ideas? She said a hawk attack but i know if a hawk killed him it would have flew off with him, even if he was being mobbed by other birds. She is in Philly. You haven't heard of a break out in disease up there have you? Well i hope you have a good day~~~~~~~~~Bonnie

    Bookmark   July 26, 2007 at 9:46AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Hi all.

Bonnie and I have been talking about Chicklet and you may not know who the heck that is. Here is a link to a real time birdy drama at GW.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2007 at 2:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
chickadeedeedee(z 6-7 ish Ohio)

Sorry Bonnie. I forgot to respond again to your question.

The Bluebird may have been poisoned or maybe he struck a window and flew off just to die later after getting a concussion. West Nile Virus or other diseases can cause death in many of the songbirds like Chickadees, Crows, Blue Jays and others. I would think BBs could get it too.

A Hawk would have at least made some wounds in the bird.

Sorry he died. There's no Toxic neighbours around are there?

    Bookmark   July 27, 2007 at 2:35PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Waterlilies won't grow, leaves are small and curled
Hi all, I have waterlillies that until a year ago was...
Hardiest Nelumbo?
Any idea if there is one variety of Asian Nelumbo that's...
Tropical marginals dormancy
Two months ago I planted an Umbrella Palm and a Papyrus...
A deck window to my pond
Covered a portion of my pond with a deck so I decided...
Pond Heat
What is the best method of heating water to 70 degrees...
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™