Landbeach Swifts have had a good year. Since we started trying to attract Swifts to Landbeach in 2002, the numbers have grown from 4 pairs then to about  50 pairs now. Pretty good when you consider the 50% decline in the last 20 years across the country as a whole. 

 

Our own colony at Old Beach Farm has grown from 12 pairs in 2019 to 14 pairs this year. North Farm has grown from 6 pairs last year to 12 pairs this year. Bob and Elaine Humphrey, with the Baptist Chapel have 9 pairs this year. 

In the church the numbers have grown from 6 pairs  in 2017, 8 pairs in 2018, 11 pairs in 2019 of which 9 pairs produced 14 chicks and 12 pairs in 2020 of which 10 pairs produced 20 chicks. This includes 1 chick fostered from a nest at Old Beach Farm where a single parent could have been struggling to raise 3 chicks. 

We now have 4 cameras inside the church boxes, recording everything that happens. 3 of these boxes have 2 chicks each (including the foster chick that is doing well) and the 4th box pair spend all of their time bringing in feathers and straw in preparation for next year. Some of these birds should still be here until well into August, so should anyone like an escorted visit to see them, this can be arranged. Children would be especially welcome. There is usually a good spectacle as the Swifts scream around the tower.

Further, should anyone else like to attract Swifts to their property in Landbeach, then we would be happy to help and advise. Please get in touch (01223860400).

It will not be long before all of our Swifts will be in central Africa on their way to Mozambique. So there is plenty of time to provide more homes for them when they return next May.

Dick Newell


The village of Landbeach lies to the north of Cambridge, between the city and the fens.

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