Swifts & Swiftlets in Trouble.

To: Birding Aus <>
Subject: Swifts & Swiftlets in Trouble.
From: Michael Tarburton <>
Date: Mon, 10 Oct 2011 18:49:18 +1100
G'day everyone

The first White-throated Needletails to be reported were observed at Anstead Bush, Qld, by Rod Gardner two days ago & yesterday the first Fork-tailed Swifts were seen in the Top End by David Webb. As both species are continuing to experience a significant decline I am continuing to collect as many sightings possible to continue to monitor their ups &/or downs.

So please send me locations, dates and numbers (& behaviour if you wish) directly. After each sighting is quite ok or if you like send them all to me at the end of the season.

In April I was at the Australian caving conference in Nth Qld when I found out that some of the swiftlet colonies in the caves at Chillagoe had been flooded from the extremely wet La Nina season, and some had been abandoned. To determine if the abandoned colonies will be re-established or not and to do a census of as many colonies as possible I hope to be returning in December/January. It was so wet in some caves that the nests were just soggy lumps on the walls, and water marks were in some caves above the nests.

Just hope the coming Summer is more of a normal season and some of our swiftlets can start to build up their numbers again.

Cheers & Happy birding

Michael Tarburton



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